Does physical pain augment anxious attachment?

MacDonald, Geoff and Kingsbury, Rachell (2006) Does physical pain augment anxious attachment?. Journal of Social And Personal Relationships, 23 2: 291-304. doi:10.1177/0265407506062481

Author MacDonald, Geoff
Kingsbury, Rachell
Title Does physical pain augment anxious attachment?
Journal name Journal of Social And Personal Relationships   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0265-4075
Publication date 2006
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1177/0265407506062481
Volume 23
Issue 2
Start page 291
End page 304
Total pages 14
Editor P. A. Mongeau
Place of publication London
Publisher Sage Publications Ltd
Collection year 2006
Language eng
Subject C1
380000 Behavioural and Cognitive Sciences
780108 Behavioural and cognitive sciences
Abstract This study tested the hypothesis derived from social pain theory (MacDonald & Leary, 2005) that pain affect serves as a signal of perceived social exclusion. Participants ranging in experience of persistent physical pain completed measures of pain affect, anxious and avoidant attachment, anxiety, and depression. Higher levels of pain affect were found to relate to higher levels of anxious, but not avoidant, attachment. Further, anxious attachment partially mediated the relation between pain affect and emotional distress. These data support the conclusion that one reason individuals with persistent pain experience anxiety and depression is because of heightened concerns over rejection. The data also support the conclusion that anxious attachment is more strongly related to the fight-flight-freezing system than avoidant attachment.
Keyword Adult Attachment
Social Exclusion
Psychology, Social
Q-Index Code C1

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Created: Wed, 15 Aug 2007, 08:39:01 EST