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How Do Attached Dimensions Affect Bereavement Adjustment? A Mediation Model of Continuing Bonds

TitleHow Do Attached Dimensions Affect Bereavement Adjustment? A Mediation Model of Continuing Bonds
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsYu W, He L, Xu W, Wang J, Prigerson HG
JournalPsychiatry Research
Volume238
Start Page93
Date Published02/2016
Type of ArticleBereavement
KeywordsAttachment
Abstract

The current study aims to examine mechanisms underlying the impact of attachment dimensions on bereavement adjustment. Bereaved mainland Chinese participants (N=247) completed anonymous, retrospective, self-report surveys assessing attachment dimensions, continuing bonds(CB), grief symptoms and post traumatic growth (PTG). Results demonstrated that attachment anxiety predicted grief symptoms via externalized CB and predicted PTG via internalized CB at the same time, whereas attachment avoidance positively predicted grief symptoms via externalized CB but negatively predicted PTG directly. Findings suggested that individuals with a high level of attachment anxiety could both suffer from grief and obtain post traumatic growth after loss, but it depended on which kind of CB they used. By contrast, attachment avoidance was associated with a heightened risk of maladaptive bereavement adjustment. Future grief therapy may encourage the bereaved to establish CB with the deceased and gradually shift from externalized CB to internalized CB.

URLhttp://www.psy-journal.com/article/S0165-1781(15)30236-5/pdf
DOI10.1016/j.psychres.2016.02.030