Modeling the relationships between adult attachment patterns and Borderline Personality Disorder: The role of impulsivity and aggressiveness

Andrea Fossati, Judith A. Feeney, Ilaria Carretta, Federica Grazioli, Rita Milesi, Barbara Leonardi, Cesare Maffei

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

To obtain a better understanding of the associations among Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD), adult attachment patterns, impulsivity, and aggressiveness, we tested four competing models of these relationships: a) BPD is associated with the personality traits of impulsivity and aggressiveness, but adult attachment patterns predict neither BPD nor impulsive/aggressive features; b) adult attachment patterns are significant predictors of BPD but not of impulsive/aggressive traits, although these traits correlate with BPD; c) adult attachment patterns are significant predictors of impulsive and aggressive traits, which in turn predict BPD; and d) adult attachment patterns significantly predict both BPD and impulsive/aggressive traits. We assessed 466 consecutively admitted outpatients using the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Axis II Personality Disorders (V. 2.0), the Attachment Style Questionnaire, the Barratt Impulsiveness Scale-11, and the Aggression Questionnaire. Maximum likelihood structural equation modeling of the covariance matrix showed that model (c) was the best fitting model (x 2(21) = 31.67, p > .05, RMSEA = .023, test of close fit p> .85). This result indicates that adult attachment patterns act indirectly as risk factors for BPD because of their relationships with aggressive/impulsive personality traits.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)520-537
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Social and Clinical Psychology
Volume24
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Social Psychology

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