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Context is Everything: An Investigation of Responsibility Beliefs and Interpretations and the Relationship with Obsessive-Compulsive Symptomatology across the Perinatal Period

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  24 August 2015

Roxanne Barrett
Affiliation:
Royal Holloway University of London, UK
Abigail L. Wroe*
Affiliation:
Royal Holloway University of London, UK
Fiona L. Challacombe
Affiliation:
King's College London, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, UK
*
Reprint requests to Abigail L. Wroe, Department of Clinical Psychology, Royal Holloway University of London, Holloway Hill, Egham, Surrey TW20 0EX, UK. E-mail: abigail.wroe@rhul.ac.uk

Abstract

Background: The cognitive-behavioural model of perinatal OCD suggests the role of increased sense of responsibility during the perinatal period in the development and maintenance of obsessive-compulsive symptoms. However, the idiosyncratic nature of responsibility attitudes and interpretations of intrusions is not fully understood. Aims: To investigate how responsibility interpretations regarding intrusions vary across the perinatal period and how this relates to obsessive-compulsive symptomatology. Method: 94 women (26 antenatal, 35 postpartum and 33 non-childbearing controls) completed measures of responsibility attitudes and interpretations regarding specific intrusions (either general or baby-related), as well as obsessive-compulsive symptomatology, anxiety and depression. Results: Postpartum ratings of responsibility interpretations regarding baby-related intrusions were significantly higher than: i) postpartum ratings of responsibility interpretations regarding non-baby intrusions; and ii) control group responsibility interpretations. The groups were not significantly different regarding general responsibility ratings. Ratings of baby-related responsibility interpretations predicted variance in obsessive-compulsive symptomatology. Conclusion: The postpartum group showed significant differences in responsibility interpretations regarding baby-related intrusions. These responsibility interpretations were shown to predict obsessive-compulsive symptomatology.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies 2015 

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