Three studies are described in which measures of perceived social support from friends (PSS-Fr) and from family (PSS-Fa) were developed and validated. The PSS measures were internally consistent and appeared to measure valid constructs that were separate from each other and from network measures. PSS-Fr and PSS-Fa were both inversely related to symptoms of distress and psychopathology but the relationship was stronger for PSS-Fa. PSS-Fr was more closely related to social competence. PSS-Fa was unaffected by either positive or negative mood states (self-statements), but the reporting of PSS-Fr was lowered by negative mood states. High PSS-Fr subjects were significantly lower in trait anxiety and talked about themselves more to friends and sibs than low PSS-Fr subjects. Low PSS-Fa subjects showed marked verbal inhibition with sibs.
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