The role of sex and autonomy-connectedness in internalizing and externalizing personality pathology, coping and axis-I pathology: Among psychiatric and healthy elderly

N. Bachrach, M.A. Croon, M.H.J. Bekker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Objectives:
In the current study we investigated the relationship of sex and autonomy-connectedness with internalizing and externalizing personality disorder symptoms (PDS), coping and axis-I pathology in older age.
Method:
A path model was tested which was based on neo-analytical object relation, attachment- and primary-personality theory, among 100 clinical and 106 non-clinical elderly.
Results:
In line with our model, autonomy-connectedness (self-awareness and capacity of managing new situations) was strongly associated to internalizing PDS in both groups. In both groups, neither sex nor autonomy-connectedness predicted externalizing PDS. Sex, internalizing as well as externalizing PDS and reactive defensive coping were associated to axis-I psychopathology.
Conclusions:
We conclude that sex and autonomy-connectedness were, similarly as in adult populations, associated to internalizing PDS and axis-I pathology. Treatment of elderly with internalizing PDS and axis-I psychopathology should therefore focus on enhancing autonomy-connectedness.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to) 642-650
JournalAging & Mental Health
Volume21
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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