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Title: Adult attachment, violence and anger in individuals with psychosis
Author: Mair, Fiona E.
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 2009
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There has been little research looking specifically at the relationships between attachment, anger and violence in individuals with psychosis. The present study explored this by looking at associations between attachment and violence and between attachment and anger (both self-reported and observer-rated) whilst controlling for the influence of symptom severity. Methodology: The study was correlational in design. A total of 39 male inpatients (forensic and non-forensic) with a diagnosis of schizophrenia, schizoaffective or delusional disorder were recruited. Three measures were administered directly with participants (PAM, NAS-PI, PSYRATS) and two measures were completed with participants’ keyworkers (WARS, BSI- Risk subscale). Results: As predicted, the association between attachment avoidance and self-reported anger (NAS-PI) was significant. Exploratory analyses revealed a significant association between attachment avoidance and anger arousal and a negative association with anger regulation. However no association was found between attachment avoidance and observer-rated anger. Contrary to prediction, the associations between attachment avoidance and violence (in the last year) were not significant. No significant associations were found between attachment anxiety and any of the other variables. Finally, the presence of psychotic symptoms did not have any important moderating effects on the variables. Discussion and conclusions: The finding of an association between attachment avoidance and self-reported anger is discussed. Clinical implications of the findings include that approaches to anger treatment should be sensitive to attachment related difficulties, particularly in individuals with psychosis. Failure to find significant associations between attachment avoidance and violence might be due to low power and relatively low overall rates of recent violence in the present sample. Further research is required before any firm conclusions can be reached about the relationship between attachment and violence in individuals with psychosis.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available