Examining the role of trauma, personality, and meaning in young prolonged grievers Journal Article


Authors: Tomarken, A.; Roth, A.; Holland, J.; Ganz, O.; Schachter, S.; Kose, G.; Ramirez, P. M.; Allen, R.; Nelson, C. J.
Article Title: Examining the role of trauma, personality, and meaning in young prolonged grievers
Abstract: Purpose: Younger spouses or partners have been understudied in the prolonged grief literature. The purpose of this study was to determine rates of prolonged grief in young spouses or partners and the associations between prolonged grief and personality styles (specifically, narcissistic, histrionic, and obsessive), trauma history, and the perceived meaning of the loss in the young conjugally bereaved. Participants and method: Participants between 20 and 50years old who lost a spouse/partner to cancer 6months-3years prior to the study completed the following measures during one time point (via phone or in person interviews): Prolonged Grief-13, Traumatic Life Events Questionnaire, Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory-III, and Grief Meaning Reconstruction Inventory. Results: Fifty-six spouses and partners (51.8% women) completed the interviews (mean age: 44.54±4.20years). The participants (49.1%) reported elevated rates of prolonged grief and 12.3% of the participants were diagnosed with prolonged grief with the recently published diagnostic algorithm. Bivariate analyses demonstrated an association between prolonged grief and negative meaning of the loss (r=0.73; p<0.01) and the frequency of the traumatic events (r=0.23; p<0.05). Multivariate analyses revealed that negative meaning of the loss was the only significant predictor of prolonged grief (Beta=0.71; p=0.0001). Conclusion: Elevated levels of prolonged grief were found in this population, suggesting a need for further research into young spousal grief. Young bereaved spouses may lack flexibility in reconstructing their view of the world as the death may invalidate their previously held world beliefs. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Keywords: adult; middle aged; major clinical study; logistic models; age factors; time factors; questionnaires; social support; interviews as topic; severity of illness index; psycho-oncology; cross-sectional studies; new york; meaning; qualitative research; life change events; injury; socioeconomic factors; grief; perception; spouses; stress disorders, post-traumatic; personality; named inventories, questionnaires and rating scales; resilience; trauma; prolonged grief; young spouses; grief meaning reconstruction inventory; histrionic personality disorder; millon clinical multiaxial inventory; narcissism; obsession; prolonged grief 13; traumatic life event questionnaire; resilience, psychological; widowhood
Journal Title: Psycho-Oncology
Volume: 21
Issue: 7
ISSN: 1057-9249
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons  
Date Published: 2012-01-01
Start Page: 771
End Page: 777
Language: English
DOI: 10.1002/pon.1983
PROVIDER: scopus
PUBMED: 21557384
DOI/URL:
Notes: --- - "Export Date: 1 August 2012" - "CODEN: POJCE" - "Source: Scopus"
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MSK Authors
  1. Andrew J Roth
    97 Roth
  2. Christian Nelson
    320 Nelson
  3. Jimmie C B Holland
    335 Holland
  4. Ollie T Ganz
    1 Ganz