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Partner attachment and the development of traumatic and anxious-depressive symptoms among university students

Abstract : SummaryContext : A wide literature has demonstrated how attachment style can impact symptomatology, for instance anxious, depressive, and post-traumatic symptoms. Life as a student, as a transition period between adolescence and adulthood, constituting a at-risk population in terms of health measures, may be particularly interesting to study regarding attachment to a partner and anxiety, depression, and trauma. The aims of this study were to evaluate in a French University student population: (1) the presence of anxious, depressive, and post-traumatic symptoms; and (2) the relationship between those symptoms and the attachment style with the partner.Method:Based on volunteer French students, we conducted an internet-based data collection procedure with online questionnaires (PCLS, HADS, ECR).Results:Both attachment dimensions (i.e., abandonment anxiety and intimacy avoidance) impacted post-traumatic symptoms (PCLS score). The higher the attachment anxiety score, the higher the HAD scores of anxiety and depression. In contrast, a decrease in the attachment avoidance score was associated with an increase in the anxiety and depression HAD score.Discussion:From a psychotherapeutic perspective, consideration might be given to attachment style as a risk factor, maybe even a psychopathological vulnerability. From a clinical point of view, we must take that parameter into account to explain the clinical situation of patients.
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Submitted on : Monday, August 22, 2022 - 8:26:45 AM
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J. Machado, J. Bruno, C. Rotonda, J. Siles, T. Steinmetz, et al.. Partner attachment and the development of traumatic and anxious-depressive symptoms among university students. Sexologies, Elsevier, 2020, 29 (1), pp.e19-e26. ⟨10.1016/j.sexol.2019.08.002⟩. ⟨hal-02943456⟩



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