Personality styles in a non-clinical sample: The role of emotion dysregulation and impulsivity

P. Velotti, C. Garofalo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)


Theories of personality and personality disorders are increasingly considering the centrality of emotion regulation and its dimensions. Impulsivity as well is recognized as a personality trait underlying diverse symptom presentations. Although research in this field has mainly regarded borderline personality disorder, recent studies supported the association of both emotion dysregulation and impulsivity with personality styles across all clusters. In the present study, we sought to extend extant research by investigating the joint contribution of selected difficulties in emotion regulation and impulsivity to traits of four personality styles in a community sample (N = 399, mean age = 37.91, 56.6% males). In particular, we focused on depressive, masochistic, passive-aggressive and sadistic personality styles. Multiple regression analyses showed the unique association of several domains of emotion dysregulation with all personality styles examined. Nonacceptance of emotional response was significantly and positively related with scores of all personality styles. Lack of emotional awareness was also characteristic of different styles. Beyond these similarities, distinct patterns were able to distinguish between externalizing (sadistic and passive-aggressive), and internalizing (depressive and masochistic) traits. Beyond the role of emotion dysregulation, trait impulsivity was also related to masochistic, passive-aggressive, and sadistic traits, independently explaining a significant amount of additional variance.
Keywords: Emotion dysregulation, Impulsivity, Personality disorders NOS, Sadistic, Masochistic, Passive-aggressive, Depressive
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)44-49
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Emotion dysregulation
  • Impulsivity
  • Personality disorders NOS
  • Sadistic
  • Masochistic
  • Passive-aggressive
  • Depressive


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