Sykes, Laura A. Yoviene (2018). An exploration of mentoring functions in the context of parental relationships.
The current study examined the potential importance of early perceptions of parental emotional engagement on the functions that natural mentors serve for young adults. Participants included a subsample from a nationally representative, longitudinal study of adolescent health (Add Health). The subsample consisted of 2,408 young adults (55% female; 31% non-White), who were assessed in early adolescence (M=14.38, SD=1.55) and again in young adulthood (M=21.8, SD=1.8). Structural equation models controlling for socioeconomic status (SES), youth biological sex, and race and ethnicity showed that mentors serve different functions for young adults based on their earlier perceptions of emotional engagement with their parents. More specifically, young adults who experienced low emotional engagement with their parents during early adolescence tended to turn to their mentors for a range of non-emotionally nurturing compensatory functions, including guidance/advice-giving, self-life development, and help navigating school and the workplace, whereas young adults with high emotional engagement drew on their mentors for emotional nurturance, as well as practical functions Additional analyses demonstrated the importance of the interrelations between perceptions of parental emotional engagement, mentor social role (i.e., adult relative, community member), mentor function, and SES.
developmental psychology clinical psychology psychology emotional engagement mentor functions parental relationships youth mentoring
Sykes, Laura A. Yoviene
Rhodes, Jean E.
University of Massachusetts Boston
City of Publication