Date of Award

8-2018

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Major

Psychology

Major Professor

Gregory L. Stuart

Committee Members

Todd Moore, Christopher Elledge, Spencer Olmstead

Abstract

This two-part study examined a new form of intimate partner aggression termed weight based psychological aggression. Past work supports a theoretical and empirical relationship between intimate partner aggression and eating disorder symptoms. Additionally, negative events within romantic relationships are related to major risk factors of eating disorders (e.g.. body dissatisfaction, body consciousness). In the current studies, a new measure that assessed weight based psychological aggression was examined to explore its factor structure and psychometric properties. A second aim of these studies was to further examine the weight based psychological aggression construct and how it related to eating disorder symptoms. Emotion dysregulation is one important factor that may explain the relationship between weight based psychological aggression and disordered eating behaviors (e.g., eating disorder symptoms, body consciousness). Intimate partner aggression victimization was also included in the mediational model to further examine the mediating effect of emotion dysregulation on the relationship between intimate partner aggression and disordered eating behaviors. Results from the current studies supported the factor structure of the weight based psychological aggression measure and the convergent validity. The convergent validity was partially supported, and the discriminant validity was supported. Results from the mediation analyses indicated a significant effect supporting emotion regulation as a mediator of the relationship between the Guilt/Pressure subscale of the new measure and eating disorder symptoms. However, fit indices indicated poor model fit, decreasing confidence in the theoretical models. Emotion dysregulation did not mediate the relationship between the Retaliatory/Coercive subscale of the new measure and disordered eating behaviors (e.g., eating disorder symptoms, body consciousness). The mediating effect of emotion regulation on intimate partner aggression and disordered eating (e.g., eating disorder symptoms, body consciousness) was also not significant. Results from the current studies support the need for continued research, particularly among clinical samples. Implications for research and treatment are discussed.

Factor Loadings .pdf (32 kB)
File 1.Factor Loadings for the Unmodified Weight Based Psychological Aggression Measure (PDF File)

Eigenvalues.pdf (38 kB)
File 2. Eigenvalues and Factor Loadings for Retained Weight Based Psychological Aggression Items (PDF File)

Study 1_Descriptives .pdf (42 kB)
File 3. Means, Standard Deviations, and Correlations among Study Variables in Study 1 (PDF File)

Confirmatory Factor Analysis.pdf (36 kB)
File 4.Confirmatory factor Analysis Factor Loadings (PDF File)

Study 2_Descriptives.pdf (35 kB)
File 5. Correlations Among Latent Variables and Measured Variables in Study 2 (PDF File)

Mediation Model Psychological Aggression.pdf (110 kB)
File 6. Mediational Model examining the direct and indirect effects of psychological weight aggression and psychological aggression victimization on body consciousness and eating disorder symptoms through emotion dysregulation (PDF File)

Mediation Model Physical Aggression.pdf (111 kB)
File 7. Mediational Model examining the direct and indirect effects of psychological weight aggression and physical aggression victimization on body consciousness and eating disorder symptoms through emotion dysregulation (PDF File)

Mediational Model Sexual Coercion.pdf (105 kB)
File 8. Meditational Model examining the direct and indirect effects of psychological weight aggression and sexual coercion victimization on body consciousness and eating disorder symptoms through emotion dysregulation (PDF File)

SEM Psychological Aggression.pdf (220 kB)
File 9. The mediating effect of emotion dysregulation on the relationships between weight based psychological aggression and eating disorder symptoms and body consciousness and psychological aggression victimization and eating disorder symptoms and body consciousness (PDF File)

SEM Physical Aggression.pdf (228 kB)
The mediating effect of emotion dysregulation on the relationships between weight based psychological aggression and eating disorder symptoms and body consciousness and physical aggression victimization and eating disorder symptoms and body consciousness (PDF File)

SEM Sexual Coercion.pdf (213 kB)
File 11. The mediating effect of emotion dysregulation on the relationships between weight based psychological aggression and eating disorder symptoms and body consciousness and sexual coercion victimization and eating disorder symptoms and body consciousness (PDF File)

Scale.pdf (44 kB)
File 12. Negative Weight Evaluation Scale (PDF File)

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