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|Title:||Rejection Sensitivity and Borderline Personality Disorder|
|Keywords:||Borderline personality disorder;rejection sensitivity;adolescence|
|Abstract:||This thesis presents research aimed at examining rejection sensitivity in adolescent girls with borderline personality disorder (BPD) features. Although rejection sensitivity has been discussed more generally in the literature, few studies have identified how this construct may contribute to psychopathology in adolescence. There is also limited research regarding outcome behaviours that may be associated with high rejection sensitivity as well as factors that contribute to the manifestation of this construct. Here, this thesis aims to further the understanding of rejection sensitivity in adolescence and provide evidence to support the clinical utility of examining and offering treatment for this factor in youth presenting with BPD features. Although research has shown that BPD and high rejection sensitivity are strongly correlated, few studies have investigated the outcomes that may result from having this comorbidity. In the first paper of this thesis, disordered eating was examined as an outcome behaviour in a clinical sample of girls with BPD features. The results showed that girls who met diagnostic criteria for BPD had significantly higher disordered eating behaviour and that rejection sensitivity, operationalized as fears of abandonment, mediated this relationship. In the second paper of this thesis, the relationship between self-esteem, BPD features and perceived peer rejection was investigated in a longitudinal community sample of adolescent girls. We tested the sociometer hypothesis (Leary, 2005) that self-esteem served as a metric to detect the degree of belongingness in a group context. The results indicated that the relationship between BPD features and perceived peer rejection depended on self-esteem over time. Overall, the two studies presented in this thesis contribute to the knowledge regarding rejection sensitivity in adolescents with BPD features and explores correlates and outcomes of this relationship to aid in the identification of novel treatments to target and ameliorate rejection sensitivity in this population.|
|Appears in Collections:||Open Access Dissertations and Theses|
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