DIAGNOSTIC PREDICTION OF EATING DISORDER PATIENTS ON THE BASIS OF MEASURES OF PERSONAL EFFECTIVENESS, FAMILY DYNAMICS AND TRADITIONAL SEX-ROLE BELIEFS (ANOREXIA NERVOSA, BULIMIA).
AuthorNEAL, MARY ELIZABETH.
KeywordsAppetite disorders -- Psychological aspects.
Bulimia -- Psychological aspects.
Anorexia -- Psychological aspects.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis study explored three areas believed to play a central role in the pathogenesis and presenting clinical picture of the eating disorders, anorexia nervosa and bulimia. Measures of personal effectiveness, family dynamics, and traditional sex-role beliefs were assessed in groups of restricted anorexics, bulimic anorexics, normal weight bulimics and controls. Control subjects manifested the highest degree of psychological adjustment, resourcefulness, and self-direction, while restricting anorexics obtained the lowest score on this measure. Bulimics experienced the highest degree of personal effectiveness of the patient groups, with bulimic anorexics falling in-between restricting anorexics and bulimics. Control subjects also reported that they felt more independent, accepted and tolerated in their family than any of the eating disorder groups. Bulimic subjects scored closest to controls on this measure, with bulimic anorexics experiencing the least degree of acceptance, tolerance and independence of all groups. Finally, control subjects defined themselves in a more traditionally masculine role than did any of the eating disorder groups. Restricting anorexics were most likely to describe themselves as passive, submissive, constricted and sensitive; bulimic subjects were more likely to endorse such self-descriptive adjectives as assertive, uninhibited, self-confident and competitive. Bulimic anorexics perceived themselves to be less traditionally feminine than did restricting anorexics, but more than bulimics or controls. The results of this study support the theory that ego deficits contribute to the development of eating disorders.