Home > Research > Publications & Outputs > Self-disgust mediates the relationship between ...

Electronic data

  • SDandpsychosisNov2019

    Rights statement: This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Simpson, J., Helliwell, B., Varese, F. and Powell, P. (2020), Self‐disgust mediates the relationship between childhood adversities and psychosis. Br J Clin Psychol, 59: 260-275. doi:10.1111/bjc.12245 which has been published in final form at https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/bjc.12245 This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance With Wiley Terms and Conditions for self-archiving.

    Accepted author manuscript, 423 KB, PDF document

    Embargo ends: 3/02/21

    Available under license: CC BY-NC: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

Links

Text available via DOI:

View graph of relations

Self-disgust mediates the relationship between childhood adversities and psychosis

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published
Close
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>1/06/2020
<mark>Journal</mark>British Journal of Clinical Psychology
Issue number2
Volume59
Number of pages16
Pages (from-to)260-275
Publication statusPublished
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Objective
Traumatic events in childhood have been implicated in the development of psychosis, but given that trauma is not in itself sufficient to cause psychosis, researchers have started to investigate other psychological constructs potentially involved in explaining this relationship. Given that self‐disgust as a transdiagnostic construct plays a role in the development/maintenance of a range of mental health difficulties, the objective of this study was to investigate whether self‐disgust mediates the relationship between childhood trauma and psychosis.

Method
A cross‐sectional quantitative study design was used. Seventy‐eight participants (Mage = 37.64 years, SDage = 11.57 years; 77% women; 88% White Caucasian) who reported experiencing clinical levels of psychosis were recruited using social media. The participants completed online survey measures of childhood trauma, self‐disgust, experiences of psychosis, self‐esteem, and external shame. The data were analysed using correlation and mediation analyses.

Results
Significant indirect effects of childhood trauma on both positive (β = .17, BC 95% CI [0.06, 0.30]) and negative symptoms (β = .26, BC 95% CI [0.14, 0.40]) of psychosis via self‐disgust were observed. These effects remained despite the inclusion of self‐esteem and external shame as control variables in the mediation models.

Conclusion
This study is the first to show a mediating role for self‐disgust in the relationship between childhood trauma and later psychosis. Although the findings should be considered preliminary until strengthened by further research, they nevertheless provide corroboration of the potential utility of self‐disgust as a transdiagnostic construct not only from a theoretical perspective, but also from its potential to inform formulation and interventions.

Practitioner points
When assessing individuals with psychosis, especially those with a trauma history explore experiences and feelings related to the construct of self‐disgust. Such experiences are likely to centre on feelings of repulsion towards the self/need for distance and might also manifest in the content of their psychotic experiences.
Individuals with significant levels or experiences of self‐disgust are likely to need specific interventions to address these; while interventions seeking to improve positive aspects of their identity might well be useful, they are unlikely to address the specific maladaptive elements of self‐disgust.
While self‐disgust‐focused interventions have not been widely researched, limited current evidence suggests cognitive restructuring and affirmation techniques might be useful.

Bibliographic note

This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Simpson, J., Helliwell, B., Varese, F. and Powell, P. (2020), Self‐disgust mediates the relationship between childhood adversities and psychosis. Br J Clin Psychol, 59: 260-275. doi:10.1111/bjc.12245 which has been published in final form at https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/bjc.12245 This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance With Wiley Terms and Conditions for self-archiving.