Predictors of Mental Health Profile Membership Among Vulnerable Emerging Adults

Tae Lee, Trudy Festinger, James Jaccard, Michelle R. Munson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: The aim of this study is to understand the role of social support and gender in predicting membership in mental health subgroups that were identified in a previous study of emerging adults who had experienced a child protective services (CPS) investigation during childhood. Method: Using a nationally representative sample of youths (mean age = 18.99; N = 1,179) tracked for an ex-tended period following their CPS investigation, the present study used multinomial logistic regression analysis to examine the relationship between social support, gender, and mental health. Results: Support from caregivers and peers during adolescence were the two strongest predictors of membership in the minimal symptom group compared to the midlevel symptom group. Females had greater odds of be-longing to the multimorbid group than the minimal or midlevel groups. Conclusions: Social support promotes mental health but may be insufficient to prevent severe and multiple mental health problems during emerging adulthood. Future research should further examine the role of gender and family risk factors in predicting mental health symptom profiles after child maltreatment. Policy and practice implications are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)337-364
Number of pages28
JournalJournal of the Society for Social Work and Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1 2023


  • child maltreatment
  • emerging adulthood
  • gender
  • predictors of mental health profile groups
  • social support

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science


Dive into the research topics of 'Predictors of Mental Health Profile Membership Among Vulnerable Emerging Adults'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this