Stability and Change in Relations Between Personality Traits and the Interpersonal Problems Circumplex During Cognitive Therapy for Recurrent Depression

Jeffrey R. Vittengl, Lee Anna Clark, Michael E. Thase, Robin B. Jarrett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Both personality impairment and maladaptive-range traits are necessary for diagnosis in the alternative model of personality disorder. We clarified personality impairment-trait connections using measures of the interpersonal problems circumplex and personality traits among adult outpatients (N = 351) with major depressive disorder receiving cognitive therapy (CT). The trait scales’ circumplex projections were summarized by elevation (correlations with general interpersonal problems), amplitude (specific relations to the circumplex dimensions of dominance and affiliation), and angle (predominant orientation in the two-dimensional circumplex). Most trait scales showed hypothesized circumplex relations, including substantive elevation (e.g., negative temperament, mistrust), amplitude (e.g., aggression, detachment), and expected angles (e.g., positive temperament and manipulativeness oriented toward overly nurturant/intrusive or domineering/vindictive problems, respectively), that were stable across time during CT. These results revealed meaningful and consistent impairment-trait connections, even during CT when mean depressive affect decreased substantially.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAssessment
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

Keywords

  • cognitive therapy
  • depression
  • interpersonal problems
  • personality
  • stability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Applied Psychology

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