Sensory sensitivity, attachment experiences, and rejection responses among adults with borderline and avoidant features

MEYER, B., AJCHENBRENNER, M. and BOWLES, D. P. (2005). Sensory sensitivity, attachment experiences, and rejection responses among adults with borderline and avoidant features. Journal of personality disorders, 19 (6), 641-658.

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Link to published version:: 10.1521/pedi.2005.19.6.641

Abstract

Both avoidant and borderline personality disorder (APD and BPD) are theoretically associated with temperamental vulnerabilities, adverse attachment experiences, and negative (pessimistic or catastrophic) reactions to the threat of perceived rejection; however, more work is needed to differentiate how these processes account for the etiology and maintenance of both disorders. In this study, 156 adults completed questionnaires measuring APD and BPD features, temperament (sensory-processing sensitivity), mood, and attachment experiences. A vignette task was devised to examine pessimistic cognitive-affective reactions in situations signaling potential rejection. Both APD and BPD were associated with temperamental sensitivity, but BPD was uniquely linked with a subscale measuring sensitivity to mental and emotive stimuli, whereas APD was uniquely linked with a subscale measuring the control and avoidance of aversive stimulation. Compared to APD, BPD was more strongly linked with negative moods (anxiety, anger, sadness) and insecure attachment to parents, whereas APD was more strongly linked (than BPD) to pessimistic cognitive-affective responses to rejection-related situations.

Item Type: Article
Research Institute, Centre or Group: Psychology Research Group
Identification Number: 10.1521/pedi.2005.19.6.641
Depositing User: Ann Betterton
Date Deposited: 18 Nov 2008
Last Modified: 09 Dec 2009 18:22
URI: http://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/107

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