Author ORCID Identifier

https://orcid.org/0000-0003-2585-3395

Year of Publication

2020

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation

College

Arts and Sciences

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Dr. Christal L. Badour

Abstract

Shame is a predominant emotion for some trauma-exposed individuals—particularly survivors of interpersonal violence (IPV)—that is associated with more severe symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD; see Saraiya & Lopez-Castro, 2016). Despite growing evidence of shame’s importance in recovery from trauma and PTSD, measurement challenges have played a large role in difficulties understanding and comparing the impact of shame across studies. These challenges include: 1) the use of measures that assess trait shame as opposed to trauma-related shame, 2) inconsistent use of established shame measures across studies, and 3) failure to acknowledge the co-occurrence of shame and guilt. These limitations are notable, given that trauma-related shame appears to be more predictive of PTSD symptoms and other psychiatric difficulties than trait shame (Semb et al., 2011) and more predictive of PTSD symptoms than trauma-related guilt (Cunningham et al., 2018). The Trauma-Related Shame Inventory (TRSI; Øktedalen et al., 2014) is the most widely used measure of trauma-related shame, yet additional psychometric support is needed. Two studies were thus conducted to provide additional psychometric validation to support the use of the TRSI among women with IPV histories and to better understand how trauma-related shame, relative to trait shame and trauma-related guilt, are associated with PTSD symptoms among this population.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

https://doi.org/10.13023/etd.2020.422

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