Curr Dir Psychol Sci. 2009 August 1; 18(4): 200–204.
The red arrows represent continuity from early childhood to adulthood, and the blue arrows represent proposed causal pathways. As shown in the lower portion of the model, maternal depression is a well-known predictor of youth depression; depression during adolescence in turn predicts recurrence of depression in many youth and is hypothesized to predict becoming a depressed parent, especially in females. The upper portion of the model shows the intergenerational transmission of stress in families of depressed parents, from early childhood through the transition to adulthood. Stress and depression in the youth are reciprocally related. Interpersonal dysfunction in childhood is hypothesized to be a mediator of the link between both early stress exposure and maternal depression and the two outcomes of adolescent stress and depression.