Stanford Advisors

All Publications

  • Unpacking the Impact of Early Adverse Childhood Experiences on Early Onset of Sexual Intercourse Among an Urban Birth Cohort of Early Adolescents. The Journal of adolescent health : official publication of the Society for Adolescent Medicine Zhang, X., Liu, Q., Wang, X., Vasilenko, S. A. 2023


    Early adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) predict early onset of sexual intercourse. However, patterns of ACEs identified using latent class analysis (LCA) and their links to early sexual intercourse have been less examined. In this study, we apply LCA to identify ACEs profiles at age five and to examine whether these profiles differentially predict adolescents' sexual initiation.We analyzed data obtained from the Future of Families and Child Wellbeing Study for 3,185 participants (male = 1,638; female = 1,547). This included parental/caregivers' reports of 10 types of ACEs when participants were on average at age five and youth self-report data on sexual intercourse before or at age 15. We used LCA to classify the participants into subgroups and multinomial logistic regressions to examine differences in early sexual initiation among the ACEs subgroups.LCA showed evidence of four classes for both genders: low adversity (51.8%), socioeconomic adversity (32.0%), family dysfunction (12.0%), and abuse (4.2%). We found class membership differences in early sexual intercourse in all three adversity classes compared to the low adversity group. Pairwise comparison tests further revealed that adolescents in the family dysfunction class had lesser odds of engaging in early sexual intercourse than their counterparts in the socioeconomic adversity and abuse classes.Our findings suggest that LCA could help identify meaningful and distinctive child adversity patterns while accounting for the co-occurrence of ACEs. This is particularly helpful in evaluating who might be at greatest health risk which can further inform more effective and targeted interventions.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2023.07.010

    View details for PubMedID 37676194

  • A Scoping Review on Adverse Childhood Experiences Studies Using Latent Class Analysis: Strengths and Challenges. Trauma, violence & abuse Wang, X., Jiang, L., Barry, L., Zhang, X., Vasilenko, S. A., Heath, R. D. 2023: 15248380231192922


    Adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) studies reveal the profound impacts of experiencing trauma and hardships in childhood. However, the cumulative risk approach of treating ACEs obscures the heterogeneity of ACEs and their consequences, making actionable interventions impossible. latent class analysis (LCA) has increasingly been used to address these concerns by identifying underlying subgroups of people who experience distinctive patterns of co-occurring ACEs. Though LCA has its strengths, the existing research produces few comparable findings because LCA results are dependent on ACEs measures and indicators, which vary widely by study. Therefore, a scoping review of ACEs studies using LCA that focuses on ACEs measures, indicators, and findings is needed to inform the field. Following Arksey and O'Malley's five-stage scoping review methodological framework, we first identified 211 articles from databases of EBSCOhost, PubMed, and Scopus using "adverse childhood experiences" for title search and "latent class analysis" for abstract search. Based on the inclusion criteria of peer-reviewed articles written in English published from 2012 to 2022 and the exclusion criteria of nonempirical studies and the LCA not analyzing ACEs, we finally selected 58 articles in this scoping review. Results showed LCA has been increasingly endorsed in the ACEs research community to examine the associations between ACEs and human health and well-being across culturally diverse populations. LCA overcame the limitations of the traditional methods by revealing specific ACEs clusters that exert potent effects on certain outcomes. However, the arbitrary nature of selecting ACEs indicators, measures, and the limited use of theory impedes the field from moving forward.

    View details for DOI 10.1177/15248380231192922

    View details for PubMedID 37594222

  • Does Religiosity Promote Psychological Well-being in the Transition to Established Adulthood? APPLIED RESEARCH IN QUALITY OF LIFE Hwang, W., Zhang, X., Brown, M. T., Vasilenko, S. A., Silverstein, M. 2023
  • Can Resilience Buffer the Effects of Loneliness on Mental Distress Among Working-Age Adults in the United States During the COVID-19 Pandemic? A Latent Moderated Structural Modeling Analysis INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF BEHAVIORAL MEDICINE Zhang, X., Brown, A., Rhubart, D. C. 2023: 1-11


    The profound health consequences of loneliness are well-established. However, less is known about the protective factors which may alleviate the effects of loneliness on mental health especially among working-age adults amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. We draw on the social ecology of resilience and examine whether resilience factors can buffer the effects of loneliness on mental distress.Data came from the National Well-being Survey-a national study of a demographically representative sample of U.S. working-age adults (N = 4014). We used (a) structural equation models with latent variables to examine the main effects of loneliness, psychological resilience, and perceived social support on mental distress, and (b) latent moderated structural equations to estimate the latent interaction effects.Results revealed that (a) loneliness was positively associated with mental distress and psychological resilience was negatively related to mental distress, and (b) psychological resilience and perceived social support moderated the strength of the relationship between loneliness and mental distress.Our study highlights the importance of psychological resilience and perceived social support as two protective factors in the relationship between loneliness and mental distress. Given that loneliness significantly predicts worse mental and physical health and higher mortality, identifying protective factors that might disrupt these connections is vital. As such, public health efforts to strengthen and expand familial and community social support networks and foster psychological resilience are urgently needed to support mental health among working-age adults during additional waves of the pandemic or future similar stressors.

    View details for DOI 10.1007/s12529-022-10151-0

    View details for Web of Science ID 000912229100002

    View details for PubMedID 36631701

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC9838440

  • The longitudinal relationships among poverty, material hardship, and maternal depression in the USA: a latent growth mediation model ARCHIVES OF WOMENS MENTAL HEALTH Zhang, X., Zhang, Y., Vasilenko, S. A. 2022; 25 (4): 763-770


    This study aims to understand the direct and indirect effects of poverty trajectories on maternal depression trajectories mediated by material hardship trajectories. A latent growth mediation model was tested using a predominantly low-income and mostly unmarried sample of mothers from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study, a national birth cohort of racially diverse mothers (N = 3999). Measures included family poverty, material hardship, and maternal depression from 5 waves of data which tracked mothers starting 1 year after childbirth until the child reached 15 years of age. The results revealed that (1) family poverty was associated with material hardship and maternal depression, and material hardship was related to maternal depression at the trajectory level and the rate of change, with the exception of the relationships between the rate of change in family poverty and the rate of change in maternal depression; (2) material hardship mediated the relationship between family poverty and maternal depression at the initial trajectory levels, and the rate of change in material hardship fully mediated the relationship between the rate of change in poverty and the rate of change in maternal depression. This study provides further evidence that alleviating material hardship might be a promising avenue to reducing maternal depression.

    View details for DOI 10.1007/s00737-022-01238-4

    View details for Web of Science ID 000792992800001

    View details for PubMedID 35538171

    View details for PubMedCentralID 1448458

  • Racial/ethnic differences in clusters of adverse childhood experiences and associations with adolescent mental health SSM-POPULATION HEALTH Zhang, X., Monnat, S. M. 2022; 17: 100997


    Childhood adversity is a well-established risk factor for mental health problems during adolescence. Using data from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study and latent class analysis (LCA), we examined patterns of exposure to ten adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), including socioeconomic adversity, among non-Hispanic (NH) White, NH Black, and Hispanic 9 year olds and determined associations between membership in ACE exposure "classes" and depression and anxiety scores at age 15 (N = 2849). Parental separation/divorce, economic hardship, and paternal incarceration were the most common ACEs. ACE prevalence was significantly higher among Blacks and Hispanics. ACEs clustered into four classes for Whites and Hispanics and three classes for Blacks. Over half of Whites were classified in the 'Low Adversity' class. Conversely, most Black and Hispanic adolescents were classified in the 'High Socioeconomic Adversity and Paternal Incarceration' class, characterized by above average probabilities of experiencing family economic hardship, parental separation/divorce, low maternal education, and paternal incarceration. A small share of adolescents in all three racial/ethnic groups were in the 'High Global Adversity' class, characterized by high probability of exposure to most ACEs, including physical and psychological abuse. Finally, ACE class membership was differentially associated with anxiety and depression across the three racial/ethnic groups, with generally larger differences in mental health scores across ACE groups for Whites than for Blacks and Hispanics. Our findings suggest that studies on the associations between ACEs and health outcomes that do not include childhood economic adversity risk underestimating the role of ACEs on mental health among racial/ethnic minorities. Moreover, different patterns of ACE exposure are differentially linked to anxiety and depression, and ACE group membership differences in anxiety and depression vary by racial/ethnic group. Findings suggest the need for racially tailored prevention and intervention strategies.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.ssmph.2021.100997

    View details for Web of Science ID 000789925600012

    View details for PubMedID 34984220

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC8693281

  • Stress-Buffering Effects of Mindfulness Programming for Adolescents in Schools During Periods of High- and Low-Stress ECNU Review of Education Helminen, E. C., Zhang, X., Clawson, A. J., Morton, M. L., Cary, E. L., Sinegar, S. E., Janack, P., Felver, J. C. 2022
  • Religious Transitions Among Baby Boomers From Young Adulthood to Later Life: Associations with Psychological Well-Being Over 45 Years INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF AGING & HUMAN DEVELOPMENT Hwang, W., Zhang, X., Brown, M. T., Vasilenko, S. A., Silverstein, M. 2022; 94 (1): 23-40


    We used classification analysis to examine change in religiosity among baby boomers from young adulthood to early old age and how religiosity transition patterns are associated with psychological well-being in later life. In addition, we tested the gender difference in the above association. We applied latent class and latent transition analysis to 392 baby boomers who participated in the Longitudinal Study of Generations in Wave-1 (1971) and Wave-9 (2016). We identified three classes describing religiosity at each wave (strongly religious, doctrinally religious, and weakly religious), and considered five types of change or stability in religious class membership from Wave-1 to Wave-9. Multiple regression with gender interactions revealed that men who stayed strongly religious over the period reported better psychological well-being compared to men who declined in their religiosity; no such pattern was found for women. Our findings suggest that maintaining strong religiosity over the life course was beneficial for baby boom men in later life.

    View details for DOI 10.1177/00914150211029892

    View details for Web of Science ID 000710775800001

    View details for PubMedID 34672211

  • Intergenerational Emotional Cohesion and Psychological Well-Being of Older Adults in Rural China: A Moderated Mediation Model of Loneliness and Friendship Ties JOURNALS OF GERONTOLOGY SERIES B-PSYCHOLOGICAL SCIENCES AND SOCIAL SCIENCES Zhang, X., Silverstein, M. 2022; 77 (3): 525-535


    Although researchers have linked intergenerational emotional cohesion (IEC) to psychological well-being (PWB) among older adults, the mechanisms and conditions under which IEC is related to PWB-particularly in rural areas-are less well understood. This study analyzed data from rural China to examine whether loneliness mediated the relationship between IEC and PWB, and whether friendship ties moderated the strength of the direct and indirect relationships between IEC and PWB.Mediation and moderated mediation models were tested using a sample of rural adults aged 60 and older (N = 958) from the Longitudinal Study of Older Adults in Anhui Province, China. Measures included IEC, friendship ties, loneliness, and 2 PWB indicators-depressive symptoms and life satisfaction.The results revealed that IEC was negatively related to loneliness, which in turn was associated with depressive symptoms and life satisfaction. Furthermore, this indirect pathway linking IEC and depressive symptoms (but not life satisfaction) was positively conditioned on the size of friendship ties.This study advances our understanding of the mechanism through which IEC influences PWB in older adults. Alleviating loneliness could help boost PWB. Other implications for practice and future research are discussed.

    View details for DOI 10.1093/geronb/gbab122

    View details for Web of Science ID 000755911600001

    View details for PubMedID 34214164

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC8893140

  • Family Economic Hardship and Child Outcomes: Test of Family Stress Model in the Chinese Context Zhang, X., Krishnakumar, A., Narine, L. AMER PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSOC. 2020: 960-968


    Using data from the 2014 wave of the China Family Panel Studies (CFPS), a nationally representative survey, we examined the direct and indirect effects of family economic hardship on children's outcomes using the family stress model (FSM). Multitrait-multimethod data were from a sample of 777 two-parent families. Data from both parents and one of their school-age children (M = 11.36) were used to test the proposed conceptual model using structural equation modeling conducted in Mplus 8. The results indicate partial support for the FSM in the Chinese context and show variations in the pathways for rural and urban families. The mediating role of economic pressure and parental distress in the association between family economic hardship and child emotional distress was supported. The findings have implications for the development of intervention programs and for future studies on the association between family economic hardship and child emotional distress and child self-concept in the Chinese context. The study findings suggest that clinical and policy endeavors should be directed at alleviating the effects of economic pressure and targeting efforts toward reducing parental emotional distress. These attempts could be valuable in advancing child outcomes in the face of family economic hardship. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved).

    View details for DOI 10.1037/fam0000670

    View details for Web of Science ID 000598094100007

    View details for PubMedID 32406732