Predicted posttraumatic growth based on event centrality and contingencies of self-worth

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Neuenschwander, Chelly
Kruczek, Theresa
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This study was designed to test a regression model of event centrality and contingencies of self-worth as predictors of posttraumatic growth (PTG), drawing from Constructivist Self Development Theory (CSDT; Saakvitne et al., 1998). In order to participate in the study, participants had to experience at least one adverse childhood experience (ACE) and had to be 18 years or older. Individuals who experienced sexual abuse before 18 years old were excluded from the study to prevent significant discomfort to these individuals (Mersky et al., 2019). Due to conducting the study during a global pandemic, COVID-19 questions were included in the study and used in the correlations, regression model, and post-hoc analyses. Significant results included event centrality and God’s love were positively correlated with PTG. Other contingencies of self-worth were not significantly correlated with PTG. Two demographic variables (marital status and education level) were significantly correlated with PTG and used as covariates in the regression model. One result indicated COVID-19 impacting participant’s answers was significantly correlated with PTG, and thus, this also was used as a covariate in the regression model. Event centrality and God’s love were found to significantly predict PTG in a sequential multiple regression. Post-hoc analyses suggested ACEs affected participants’ coping skills during the COVID-19 pandemic, changes in self-worth occurred as a result of the pandemic, and participants made meaning of their traumatic experiences.