Gender differences in keeping secrets from parents in adolescence

Loes Keijsers, Susan J T Branje, Tom Frijns, Catrin Finkenauer, Wim Meeus

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

88 Citations (Scopus)


The current longitudinal study examined adolescent gender differences in the developmental changes and relational correlates of secrecy from parents. For 4 successive years, starting in the second year of junior high (mean age at Time 1 = 13.2 years, SD = 0.51), 149 male and 160 female Dutch adolescents reported on secrecy from their parents and the quality of the parent-child relationship. Latent growth curve modeling revealed a linear increase in secrecy, which was significantly faster for boys than for girls. Moreover, cross-lagged panel analyses showed clear concurrent and longitudinal linkages between secrecy from parents and poorer parent-child relationship quality in girls. In boys, much less strong linkages were found between poorer relationships and secrecy from parents.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)293-298
JournalDevelopmental Psychology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Behavior/psychology
  • Adolescent Development
  • Communication
  • Confidentiality/psychology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Parent-Child Relations
  • Parenting/psychology
  • Sex Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires


Dive into the research topics of 'Gender differences in keeping secrets from parents in adolescence'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this