Stefania Muzi, Cecilia Serena Pace

Adolescents in residential-care. Relations among internalizing and externalizing symptoms, attachment, emotion regulation and alexithymia

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Residential-care adolescents, internalizing and externalizing symptoms, attachment, emotional regulation strategies, alexithymia.

This preliminary study involved 20 residential-care adolescents (aged 13-18, 65% males), placed due to adverse experiences in their birth-families, with the aim to investigate the relations among internalizing and externalizing symptoms – measured by the Youth Self Report (YSR-11/18) – and attachment representations, measured by the Friends & Family Interview (FFI), Gross’s emotion regulation strategies by the Emotional Regulation Questionnaire for Children and Adolescents (ERQ-CA) and alexithymia by the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20). The set of attachment disorganization (revealed in 30% of adolescents) and alexithymia factors’ Difficulty to Identifying Feelings and Difficulty to Describing Feelings predicted 25% of internalizing symptoms (p = .05). Authors suggested the clinical utility to deepen the role of attachment disorganization and alexithymia as potential risk factors for internalizing symptoms in residential-care adolescents.

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