Testosterone and Child and Adolescent Adjustment: The Moderating Role of Parent-Child Relationships

Alan Booth, David R. Johnson, Douglas A. Granger, Ann C. Crouter, Susan McHale

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

122 Scopus citations


In a sample of established middle- and working-class families with normally developing children and adolescents ranging in age from 6 to 18 years, sons' and daughters' testosterone levels showed little direct connection to risk behavior or symptoms of depression. In contrast, testosterone's positive relation with risk behavior and negative relation with depression were conditional on the quality of parent-child relations. As parent-child relationship quality increased, testosterone-related adjustment problems were less evident. When relationship quality decreased, testosterone-linked risk-taking behavior and symptoms of depression were more in evidence. Few relations were found between parents' testosterone and child behavior. Boys' and girls' ages and stages of pubertal development were important for understanding the expression of hormone-related problem behavior in some cases but not in others.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)85-98
Number of pages14
JournalDevelopmental psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2003

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Demography
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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