Younger people and people with higher subjective SES experienced more negative effects of the pandemic on their friendships

Jessica D. Ayers, Diego Guevara Beltrán, Andrew Van Horn, Lee Cronk, Peter M. Todd, Athena Aktipis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Friendships provide social support and mental health benefits, yet the COVID-19 pandemic has limited interactions with friends. In August 2020, we asked participants (N = 634) about their friendships during the pandemic as part of a larger study. We found that younger people and people with higher subjective SES reported more negative effects on their friendships, including feeling more isolated and lonelier. We also found that stress, isolation, and guilt were associated with greater COVID-related social risk-taking, such as making and visiting new friends in person. Our results suggest the pandemic is affecting friendships differently across demographic groups and these negative effects might motivate social risk-taking.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number111246
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Volume185
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2022
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Psychology(all)

Keywords

  • Cooperation
  • COVID-19
  • Friendship
  • Risk management

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