Childhood Trauma and the Emergence of Disordered Eating Symptoms: An Investigation of Contributing Variables

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Show simple item record Pettway, Anna Charis 2017-06-14T19:42:32Z 2017-06-14T19:42:32Z 2017-06-14
dc.description.abstract This dissertation aimed to elucidate the complex relationship between childhood trauma and disordered eating. An extensive literature review demonstrated that the previous research in this area was contradictory and chaotic and that no one study had looked at all of the proposed mediators and moderators together. Thus, in this dissertation, the moderators of: PTSD, maladaptive affect, insecure attachment, agent of abuse, age of trauma onset, and chronicity of abuse are investigated along with the mediators of: dissociation, family dysfunction, and body dissatisfaction. This study was limited to adult women and was conducted on a nonclinical population. The final sample consisted of 322 adult women; of those women, 146 endorsed a history of childhood trauma. Emotional abuse and sexual abuse were the most commonly reported forms of trauma. Participants completed an online survey that was comprised of the Eating Disorder Inventory (EDI-3), the Trauma Symptom Inventory (TSI-3), the Experiences in Close Relationships (ECR-R), the Inventory of Family Relations (IFR), and the Childhood Trauma Questionnaire (CTQ), along with several demographics questions. Participants endorsing abuse also answered questions about their abuse history in terms of chronicity (one incident v. repeated), age of abuse onset (before or after age 14), and agent of abuse (family or non-family member). Hypotheses were analyzed using bivariate correlations, multiple regressions, ANOVAs, and structural equation modeling. Childhood trauma did indeed emerge as a non-specific risk factor for disordered eating symptoms, but this relationship was completely mediated by body dissatisfaction and dissociative symptoms. Thus, results indicated that disordered eating symptoms can be predicted by childhood trauma, and the most important factors in this relationship are dissociative symptoms, maladaptive affect, low self-esteem, and body dissatisfaction. These findings have substantial implications for clinicians in terms of identifying those at risk for onset of disordered eating symptoms and also in terms of understanding complex trauma. en_US
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.subject Body dissatisfaction en_US
dc.subject Childhood trauma en_US
dc.subject Complex trauma en_US
dc.subject Disordered eating en_US
dc.subject Dissocation en_US
dc.subject Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) en_US
dc.title Childhood Trauma and the Emergence of Disordered Eating Symptoms: An Investigation of Contributing Variables en_US

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