Topical Section: The Effects of Trauma
Childhood emotional abuse and eating symptoms in bulimic disorders: An examination of possible mediating variables
Version of Record online: 7 JUN 2011
Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
International Journal of Eating Disorders
Volume 45, Issue 3, pages 326–332, April 2012
How to Cite
Groleau, P., Steiger, H., Bruce, K., Israel, M., Sycz, L., Ouellette, A.-S. and Badawi, G. (2012), Childhood emotional abuse and eating symptoms in bulimic disorders: An examination of possible mediating variables. Int. J. Eat. Disord., 45: 326–332. doi: 10.1002/eat.20939
- Issue online: 8 MAR 2012
- Version of Record online: 7 JUN 2011
- Manuscript Accepted: 3 APR 2011
- Fonds de la Recherche en Santé du Québec (FRSQ). Grant Number: 6313A
- Canadian Institutes for Health Research. Grant Numbers: MOP-79490, MOP-57929
- bulimia nervosa;
- childhood emotional abuse;
- affective instability;
- eating-disorder symptoms
We sought to estimate prevalences of childhood emotional abuse (CEA) in bulimic and normal-eater control groups, and to replicate previous findings linking CEA to severity of eating symptoms in BN. We also examined potential mediators of the link between CEA and disordered eating.
Women diagnosed with a bulimic disorder (n = 176) and normal-eater women (n = 139) were assessed for childhood traumata, eating-disorder (ED) symptoms and psychopathological characteristics (ineffectiveness, perfectionism, depression, and affective instability) thought to be potential mediators of interest.
CEA was more prevalent in the bulimic than in the nonbulimic group, and predicted severity of some eating-symptom indices. Ineffectiveness and affective instability both mediated relationships between CEA and selected ED symptoms.
We found CEA to predict eating pathology through mediating effects of ineffectiveness and affective instability. CEA might influence severity of ED symptoms by impacting an individual's self-esteem and capacity for affect regulation. © 2011 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. (Int J Eat Disord 2012)