During middle adolescence, where youth start to channel their general desire into specific career roles, parents’ efforts in providing opportunities for youth to engage in their interests become increasingly useful (Malin et al., 2014). Although there is also evidence that sibling support is related to adolescents’ future aspirations (Ali et al., 2005), adults—including parents and other family members—may be more likely to help youth cultivate a sense of purpose (e.g., White et al., 2021).
Given that family is often one immediate system around youth, family members are likely to be a source of support to purpose development during adolescence. Indeed, parental support was positively associated with youth’s exploration and commitment to purpose (Blattner et al., 2013; Li & Cheng, 2020)
On the other hand, the role of peers has long been argued to become gradually more influential throughout adolescence, with healthy and maladaptive outcomes both being reported (Brown, 2004).
Having a sense of purpose has been regarded as an asset for positive youth development (Hill et al., 2013). Prior studies have not only shown the importance of purpose in youth’s psychological functioning (e.g., Bronk et al., 2009), but also how support from others can contribute to youth’s purpose (e.g., Bundick & Tirri, 2014; Moran et al., 2013).
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