EARLY NEGATIVE EXPERIENCE AS A REGULATOR OF STRESS REACTIVITY

Authors

  • Milica Lazić Department of Psychology, Faculty of Philosophy, University of Nov Sad
  • Vesna Gavrilov Jerković Department of Psychology, Faculty of Philosophy, University of Nov Sad
  • Veljko Jovanović Department of Psychology, Faculty of Philosophy, University of Nov Sad

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.19090/pp.2015.2.167-186

Keywords:

stress sensitization, stress inoculation, early negative experience, negative life events, distress

Abstract

Theoretical models dealing with the effects of early negative experiences assume that early adverse experiences play a moderating role in the relationship between recent negative life events and psychological functioning. The main goal of the present longitudinal study was to test the basic assumptions of the stress sensitization model and the stress inoculation model. The sample consisted of 293 undergraduate students (80% females), with a mean age of 20.56 years. At Time 1 participants completed a measure of early negative experience with parents, at Time 2 (after 6 months) a check list of recent negative life events, while at Time 3 (12 months after the initial assessment) participants completed a measure of emotional distress. The results showed that early negative experience had a moderating role in the relationship between recent stressors and emotional distress, supporting the risk saturation model. A positive association between recent stressors and emotional distress was found among individuals with low and moderate levels of early negative experiences. Individuals with high levels of early negative experiences reported higher levels of emotional distress, independent of the number of recent negative life events. The differences between individuals with low and moderate levels of early negative experiences in the context of small number of recent negative events is best explained by the stress inoculation model, given that individuals with moderate levels of early adverse experiences reported the lowest levels of distress.

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Published

03.07.2015

How to Cite

Lazić, M., Gavrilov Jerković, V., & Jovanović, V. (2015). EARLY NEGATIVE EXPERIENCE AS A REGULATOR OF STRESS REACTIVITY. Primenjena Psihologija, 8(2), 167–186. https://doi.org/10.19090/pp.2015.2.167-186

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