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Title: Shame and self harm in Axis II disorders
Author: Lamb, Christina S.
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 2004
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Self harm is a challenging clinical problem within the health services. Although it has attracted a great deal of research attention, the majority of this research would appear to be descriptive in nature, with limited knowledge relating to the actual experience and function of self harm. It is suggested that one of the reasons that individuals engage in self harm is to be relieved of negative emotions (Brown, 2003). One emotion that is thought to play a significant role in self harm is shame (Wise, 1989). Further to this, self harm behaviour is found to be prevalent in the Axis II disorder (Personality Disorder) client group (Dulit et al., 1994). However, the fact that not all individuals engage in self harm behaviour, would suggest that certain mediating factors may exist. The hypotheses that were explored stated that individuals who have a personality disorder and who self harm, will experience higher levels of internal shame, and report more active shame schemas than those with a personality disorder who do not self harm. It was also hypothesised that in those who self harm, the frequency of self harm would be related to the levels of shame. The results of the study were analysed, and are discussed with reference to related theories and literature. Two case examples are also reported. The findings of this study suggested that there were no differences in shame between individuals with a personality disorder who self harm and those who do not self harm. The findings also indicated that there was no relationship between the frequency of self harm and shame. However, during the course of analysis, there was some evidence of a relationship between the recency of self harm and the level of shame. Methodological issues and conclusions are discussed.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available