Distress and Restraint as Superordinate Dimensions of Self-Reported Adjustment: A Typological Perspective


  • This research was funded in part by a National Science Foundation Grant (to the second author), a Sigma X1 Grants-in-Aid-of-Research award, and the Stanford Center for the Study of Families, Children, and Youth The authors wish to thank Irvin Child, Donald Quinlan, Robert Sternberg, and Seymour Sarason for their consultation in the early phases of this research We also gratefully acknowledge the assistance of Caroline Griffin, Karla Moras, and Rita Ghatak and the helpful suggestions of Kim Bartholomew, Shirley Feldman, Martin Ford, Rich Gonzalez, Len Horowitz, Roger Kobak, Jack Mayer, Tom Merluzzi, Rom Tower, and Steve Tublin Gary Schwartz is now at the University of Arizona

concerning this article should be addressed to Daniel A Weinberger, who is now at the Department of Psychology, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH 44106


ABSTRACT Individual differences in distress and restraint have recently been validated as two superordinate dimensions of social-emotional adjustment (Weinberger, 1989) In two samples (N1= 139, N2= 136) of university students, scores on these dimensions were jointly used to define six higher order personality styles reactive, sensitized, oversocialized, undersocialized, self-assured, and repressive To evaluate this typology, group differences were investigated on 28 measures within seven domains related to adjustment self-expression, emotional control, proneness to personality disorders, physical illness, self-concept, neurotic symptoms, and impulse gratification One-way multivariate analyses of variance revealed significant group differences within each domain Univariate analyses revealed significant differences on 26 of the 28 measures and marginally significant differences on the remaining 2 A large number of nonadditive patterns consistent with a priori group descriptions corroborated the utility of a person-centered, typological approach The data also provided an empirically derived, prototypic description of each adjustment style