Childhood Poverty, Cumulative Risk Exposure, and Adjustment in Emerging Adults: A Prospective Latent Profile with Contextual Factors
We proposed that poverty-related risks and adjustment assessment would reveal 5 patterns including (1) experiencing high levels of risks with high levels of behavioral maladjustment, a externalizing problem group; (2) experiencing high levels of risks with high levels of emotional maladjustment, a internalizing problem group; (3) experiencing high levels of risks with high levels of emotional and behavioral maladjustment, a comorbidity group; (4) experiencing high levels of adversity with a low level of adjustment problems, a resilience group; (5) experiencing low levels of risks with a high level of functioning, a low risk group.
A latent profile analysis identified 5 profiles in the data that confirm the hypothesis. Academic engagement, involvement in prosocial behavior, and parental monitoring are key protective factors to distinguish the resilience group from the externalizing problem and commodity groups. The results suggest youths in poor families benefit from these factors facing the effects of poverty stress across childhood to early adulthood.