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Recent research has emphasized the importance of within-person transactions between situational perceptions and borderline symptomatology. The current study extends current evidence by evaluating a broad range of situational perceptions and their transactions with borderline symptomatology across both private and professional contexts. Additionally, it explores whether early experiences of parental harsh punishment and emotional support during childhood, two well-established etiological factors in developmental theories of borderline symptomatology, influence the effect of daily situation perception in adulthood on borderline symptom presentation.
N = 131 young adults (Mage = 20.97, s.d.age = 1.64) completed end-of-day diaries of their borderline symptoms and perceptions of the home and school or work environment for 14 days. During their mid-childhood, reports of maternal strategies of harsh punishment and emotional support were collected.
Findings revealed that on the same day, borderline symptoms were associated with more negative and stressful, and less positive perceptions of both the private and professional context. Additionally, borderline symptoms predicted more negative and stressful perceptions of school/work on subsequent days. Finally, while early harsh punishment predicted overall increases in daily borderline symptoms 10 years later, emotionally supportive parenting in childhood predicted decreases in borderline symptom expression in less positive and more stressful contexts.
The current study points to the importance of managing BPD symptoms to reduce subsequent negative perceptions of the environment, and also indicates the relevance of exploring adult person-situation processes based on early parenting experiences.
In their focal article, Reynolds, McCauley, Tsacoumis, and the Jeanneret Symposium Participants (2018) stress the importance of context in leadership assessment. For instance, they argue that senior executives work in a different context compared to lower-level managers and that this should be taken into account. A simple example is that the competency of strategic thinking is critical for executive performance but much less so, if at all, for front-line supervisors. The claim that context matters in leadership and in the assessment of leaders is easy to grasp but difficult to apply in practice.
Research on developmental trajectories of early maladaptive features for understanding later personality disorders (PDs) is increasingly recognized as an important study area. The course of early odd features is highly relevant in this regard, as only a few researchers have addressed childhood oddity in the context of emerging PDs. Using latent growth modeling, the current study explores growth parameters of odd features in a mixed sample of Flemish community and referred children (N = 485) across three measurement waves with 1-year time intervals. Personality pathology was assessed at a fourth assessment point in adolescence. Beyond a general declining trend in oddity characteristics, the results demonstrated that both an early onset and an increasing trend of oddity-related characteristics over time are independent predictors of adolescent PDs. Childhood oddity tends to be the most manifest precursor for PDs with a core oddity feature (i.e., the schizotypal and borderline PD), but also appears to predict most of the other DSM-5 PDs. Results are discussed from an overarching developmental framework on PDs (Cicchetti, 2014), specifically focusing on the principle of multifinality. From a clinical perspective, the significance of increasing or steady-high childhood oddity trajectories for adolescent PDs highlights the relevance of systematic screening processes across time.
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