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Multi-level factors associated with psychological resilience in the face of adverse childhood experiences among Chinese early adolescents.

BACKGROUND: Adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) are pervasive and exert enduring negative effects on health throughout one's life. A better understanding of resilience among adolescents with ACEs exposure is crucial to enhance their mental health; however, comprehensive and multifaceted analyses of its associated factors are limited.

OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to investigate multi-level correlates of psychological resilience in Chinese early adolescents exposed to ACEs.

PARTICIPANTS AND SETTING: In a sample of 5724 middle school students, 65.5 % (n = 3749; 49.1 % females; Mage  = 13.57, SD = 0.96) reported ACEs during their primary school period and were finally included in this study.

METHOD: Both linear regression and network models were conducted to explore correlates of capacity- and outcome-oriented resilience at the individual (i.e., five personality traits, emotional release, and loneliness), family (i.e., family support and relationships with the mother and father), and school levels (i.e., peer support, teacher support, and relationships with classmates and teachers).

RESULTS: Linear regression analysis revealed that all correlates were associated with capacity- (β ranged from -0.271 to 0.503, PFDR  < 0.001 for all) and outcome-oriented resilience (β ranged from -0.516 to 0.229, PFDR  < 0.001 for all). Similarly, network analysis revealed that neuroticism, conscientiousness, loneliness, emotional release, extraversion, and the relationship with the mother were directly associated with both capacity- (weights ranged from 0.029 to 0.179) and outcome-oriented resilience (weights ranged from 0.024 to 0.396). However, openness, peer and family support, and relationships with classmates and teachers were directly associated with capacity-oriented resilience (weights ranged from 0.020 to 0.201).

CONCLUSIONS: This study identified the shared and unique associated factors for capacity- and outcome-oriented resilience in the face of ACEs and demonstrated the complex interactions between these factors, which can guide tailored interventions to enhance resilience among Chinese early adolescents with ACEs exposure. Further longitudinal studies may endeavor to confirm our results.

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