ISSN 2043-8087
Journal of Experimental Psychopathology
 Volume 4, Issue 5, 546-565, 2013
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Emotion Regulation in Borderline Personality Disorder: Examining the Consequences of Spontaneous and Instructed Use of Emotion Suppression and Emotion Acceptance when Viewing Negative Films

Authors
Davy Evans(a), Maxine Howard(a), Robert Dudas(b),(c), Chess Denman(c), Barnaby D Dunn(a),(d)
(a) MRC Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit, Cambridge, UK
(b) Department of Psychiatry, University of Cambridge
(c) Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust, UK
(d) Mood Disorders Centre, University of Exeter, UK

Volume 4, Issue 5, 2013, Pages 546-565
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5127/jep.029512

Abstract
Central to models of Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is the notion that dysfunctional application of avoidant emotion regulation strategies results in elevated emotional reactivity. To test this account, participants (N = 87) with varying severity of BPD underwent two negative mood inductions, the first with no particular instructions and the second following suppress or accept instructions. BPD severity was associated with greater negative affect at baseline. While BPD severity was associated with greater avoidance, this did not lead to differential reactivity or recovery when viewing the uninstructed film. Both instructed suppression and acceptance reduced emotional reactivity and accelerated recovery in the second film. While BPD severity did not influence how effectively instructed regulation could manage self- reported affect, those with more marked symptoms were trend less effective at regulating electrodermal response. Overall, these data provide little support for the notion that avoidant regulation strategies might lead to emotional hyper-reactivity in BPD, inconsistent with emotional dysregulation accounts of the disorder.

Table of Contents
Introduction
Method
Participants
Materials
BPD Measures.
Trait Emotion Regulation Measures.
Film Stimuli.
Experimental Manipulation
Psychophysiology Recording
Procedure
Results
Emotion Regulation
Trait Strategy Use.
State Strategy Use.
Emotional Reactivity in the Uninstructed Emotion Regulation Condition Subjective experience.
Psychophysiology response.
Effect of spontaneous strategy deployment.
Spontaneous Acceptance and Commitment Therapy
Negative Affect.
Positive Affect.
EDA.
Discussion
Acknowledgements
References

Correspondence to
Barney Dunn, Mood Disorders Centre, University of Exeter, Perry Road, Exeter

Keywords
Emotion regulation, Suppression, Acceptance, Borderline Personality Disorder, Dialectical Behaviour Therapy

Dates
Received 29 May 2012; Revised 25 Sep 2012; Accepted 18 Nov 2012; In Press 16 Oct 2013







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