Dispositional attachment orientations, contextual variations in attachment security, and compassion fatigue among volunteers working with traumatized individuals

Eleanor Pardess, Mario Mikulincer, Rachel Dekel, Phillip R. Shaver

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations

Abstract

In the present article, we report a series of studies examining the links between attachment orientations and compassion fatigue among volunteers working with traumatized individuals. Participants were volunteers in several trauma-related organizations, ranging in age from 18 to 69 years. In Study 1 (N = 148), we examined associations between self-reports of attachment insecurities and compassion fatigue. In Study 2 (N = 54), we used a diary design to assess attachment-related differences in emotional reactions to actual helping encounters over a 2-month period. In Study 3 (N = 108), we examined the effects of the experimental enhancement of attachment security (security priming) on reactions to a hypothetical helping encounter. As expected, attachment insecurities, either anxiety or avoidance, were associated with heightened compassion fatigue. Moreover, security priming reduced compassion fatigue in response to a hypothetical helping encounter.These findings underscore the relevance of attachment theory for understanding and preventing compassion fatigue.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)355-366
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Personality
Volume82
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2014

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Dispositional attachment orientations, contextual variations in attachment security, and compassion fatigue among volunteers working with traumatized individuals'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this