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CONGRUENCY BETWEEN DEPRESSOGENIC SCHEMAS AND LIFE EVENTS FOR THE PREDICTION OF DEPRESSIVE RELAPSE IN REMITTED OLDER PATIENTS

  • Marléne Voyer (a1) and Philippe Cappeliez (a1)

Abstract

Activation of a depressogenic schema by a negative life event is said to be more likely when the life event corresponds to the same domain of vulnerability (congruency hypothesis). Specifically, this refers to a negative interpersonal event for the sociotropy/dependency schema, and an obstacle or a failure in achieving a goal for the autonomy/accomplishment or self-criticism schema. This study examines the congruency hypothesis for the prediction of relapse. Older patients were followed for 6 months after remission from major depression. Life events were rated as interpersonal or autonomous in nature. Their subjective impact on social relations and on autonomous functioning was also assessed. Congruency between dependency schema and interpersonal events, but only when the subjective impact of event was taken into consideration, predicted relapse. Non-congruency between an autonomous schema and an event rated as impacting the social domain also predicted relapse. However, in both analyses of dependency and autonomy schemas, impact of event on social relations on its own predicted relapse. These findings support the cognitive vulnerability theory of depressive relapse, underlining the importance of considering how the person views the influence of life events and the determining impact of stressful life events on social relations.

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Reprint requests to Philippe Cappeliez, School of Psychology, University of Ottawa, 11 Marie Curie Street, PO Box 450, Stn. A., Ottawa, Ontario K1N 6N5, Canada. E-mail: pcappeli@uottawa.ca

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CONGRUENCY BETWEEN DEPRESSOGENIC SCHEMAS AND LIFE EVENTS FOR THE PREDICTION OF DEPRESSIVE RELAPSE IN REMITTED OLDER PATIENTS

  • Marléne Voyer (a1) and Philippe Cappeliez (a1)
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