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Partner trust and childhood emotional maltreatment : considering the roles of maladaptive schemas and… Baugh, Leah M. 2018

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   PARTNER TRUST AND CHILDHOOD EMOTIONAL MALTREATMENT: CONSIDERING THE ROLES OF MALADAPTIVE SCHEMAS AND PSYCHOLOGICAL FLEXIBILITY  by Leah M. Baugh B.A., Simon Fraser University, 2015  A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF  MASTER OF ARTS in The Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (Counselling Psychology)  THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA (Vancouver)   June 2018 © Leah M. Baugh, 2018    ii  The following individuals certify that they have read, and recommend to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies for acceptance, a thesis/dissertation entitled:  Partner Trust and Childhood Emotional Maltreatment:   The Mediating and Moderating Roles of Maladaptive Schemas and Psychological Flexibility  submitted by Leah Baugh  in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in Counselling Psychology  Examining Committee: Dr. Daniel W. Cox, Counselling Psychology Supervisor  Dr. David Kealy, Psychiatry Supervisory Committee Member  Dr. Richard A. Young, Counselling Psychology Supervisory Committee Member                        iii  Abstract Victims of childhood emotional maltreatment (CEM) often experience lasting interpersonal impacts.  CEM is commonly experienced as a betrayal of trust and can lead victims to generalize this mistrust to relationships in adulthood, including their romantic partners.  The aim of the present study was to better understand the association between CEM and partner trust by examining the relative strength of three potential mediators – psychological flexibility, maladaptive self schemas, and maladaptive other schemas. The study also investigated whether psychological flexibility buffers the association between maladaptive schemas and partner trust.  Adults (N = 231) in committed romantic relationships completed measures of CEM, romantic partner trust, maladaptive schemas, and psychological flexibility.  Simple and multiple mediation analyses were performed.  I found that maladaptive self schemas were a stronger mediator than maladaptive other schemas; however, psychological flexibility was a more potent mediator than either schema type. Contrary to my hypothesis, psychological flexibility did not significantly moderate the effect of maladaptive schemas on partner trust.  The findings highlight the importance of attending to and increasing psychological flexibility with victims of CEM to facilitate romantic partner trust. Practical and clinical implications are discussed.                  iv  Lay Summary Childhood abuse is related to trust in romantic partner relationships as they both involve relying on a significant other (i.e., caregiver, or partner). If children’s first experience trusting caregivers to support and meet their needs results in betrayal, the expectation will be that others will also betray them.  This blocks the development of trust in later relationships because the perceived risk for betrayal is too high.  The purpose of the present study was to identify possible protective factors that may allow people to trust despite having experienced abuse in childhood.  The findings indicate that being flexible and open to new experiences is linked with higher levels of romantic partner trust for victims of childhood abuse.                                  v  Preface This thesis is original, independent work by the author, Leah M. Baugh.  The research was covered by the UBC Research Ethics Board Certificate number H17-02227.                                             vi  Table of Contents Abstract ......................................................................................................................................... iii	  Lay Summary ............................................................................................................................... iv	  Preface ............................................................................................................................................ v	  Table of Contents ......................................................................................................................... vi	  List of Tables .............................................................................................................................. viii	  List of Figures ............................................................................................................................... ix	  Acknowledgments ......................................................................................................................... x	  Dedication ..................................................................................................................................... xi	  Chapter 1: Introduction ............................................................................................................... 1	  Chapter 2: Literature Review ...................................................................................................... 2	  Romantic Partner Trust and Childhood Emotional Maltreatment ....................................................2	  Maladaptive Schemas and CEM ............................................................................................................2	  Maladaptive self schemas .....................................................................................................................3	  Maladaptive Schemas and Trust ............................................................................................................3	  Childhood Emotional Maltreatment and Psychological Flexibility ....................................................4	  Psychological Flexibility and Partner Trust .........................................................................................4	  Current Study ..........................................................................................................................................5	  Chapter 3: Method ........................................................................................................................ 8	  Participants ..............................................................................................................................................8	  Procedure ...............................................................................................................................................10	  Measures .................................................................................................................................................11	  Demographic Questionnaire ................................................................................................................11	  Childhood Emotional Maltreatment (CEM) .......................................................................................11	  Maladaptive Schemas ..........................................................................................................................11	     vii  Romantic Partner Trust .......................................................................................................................12	  Psychological Flexibility .....................................................................................................................12	  Intimate Partner Violence ...................................................................................................................13	  Data Analytic Plan .................................................................................................................................14	  Chapter 4: Results ....................................................................................................................... 15	  Preliminary Analyses ............................................................................................................................15	  Simple Mediation Models .....................................................................................................................16	  Multiple Mediation Models ...................................................................................................................18	  Maladaptive Self Schemas and Maladaptive Other Schemas as Mediators .......................................18	  Final Model: Including All Three Mediators ......................................................................................20	  Mediated Moderation Model ................................................................................................................21	  Chapter 5: Discussion ................................................................................................................. 23	  General Discussion ................................................................................................................................23	  Practical Implications ............................................................................................................................25	  Limitations and Future Directions .......................................................................................................26	  References .................................................................................................................................... 27	  Appendices ................................................................................................................................... 35	  Appendix A: Consent Form ..................................................................................................................35	  Appendix B: Recruitment Ad ...............................................................................................................37	  Appendix C: Debriefing Form ..............................................................................................................38	  Appendix D: Demographics ..................................................................................................................40	  Appendix E: Childhood Trauma Questionnaire - SF ........................................................................42	  Appendix F: Evaluative Beliefs Scale ..................................................................................................44	  Appendix G: CompACT .......................................................................................................................45	  Appendix H: Trust Scale .......................................................................................................................47	  Appendix I: Revised Conflict Tactics Scale - SF ................................................................................49	  	      viii  List of Tables Table 1 Descriptive statistics and sample demographics .........................................................................8	  Table 2 Bivariate correlations ...................................................................................................................16	  Table 3 Standardized coefficients for simple mediation models ...........................................................16	  Table 4 Standardized coefficients for maladaptive self and other schemas .........................................19	  Table 5 Standardized coefficients for maladaptive schemas and psychological flexibility .................21	                                          ix  List of Figures Figure 1. Specific mediators and moderators between CEM and partner trust ...................................6	  Figure 2. Hypotheses of the associations between variables ....................................................................7	  Figure 3. Simple mediation model – self schemas ...................................................................................17	  Figure 4. Simple mediation model – other schemas ................................................................................17	  Figure 5. Simple mediation model – psychological flexibility ................................................................18	  Figure 6. Multiple mediation model – self and other maladaptive schemas ........................................19	  Figure 7. Multiple mediation model – three mediators ..........................................................................20	  Figure 8. Mediated moderation ................................................................................................................22	                                     x  Acknowledgments To my supervisor, Dr. Dan Cox, thank you for the countless hours you have invested, for moments of small talk and personal encouragement, but mostly for inspiring me to pursue excellence as a developing researcher.  Thank you for your patience and dedication, I have truly valued our working relationship.  I would also like to express my gratitude to my committee members, Dr. Richard Young and Dr. David Kealy.  Thank you for your support and investment of time throughout my thesis project.  I appreciated your thoughtful questions and rich discussion.  I would not have gotten through this process without the support of my friends and fellow graduate students – thank you for inspiring me, and journeying alongside me.  I would especially like to thank Tanaya for your listening ear and never ending confidence in me, and Ale, Viktoriya, and Lorilee for bringing laughter and light during the tough times. I would like to express my gratitude to my parents, siblings and in-laws for the source of emotional support, compassion, and encouragement during particularly challenging days – you push me to be better. I am most grateful to my husband and closest friend Nathan.  Thank you for not only encouraging me to pursue my dreams, but for your selflessness on the daily to ensure I was able to get here.  I am grateful for your love, commitment and patience.  So thankful to do life alongside you; you are simply the best.   And finally, thank you to my spastic and fun-loving pup Chloe, for being attuned to my emotions and always putting a grin on my face.          xi  Dedication       To my husband Nathan, my family, and to those who have experienced childhood maltreatment  -   May you have new experiences filled with resilience and hope.                                  1  Chapter 1: Introduction Victims of childhood emotional maltreatment (CEM) often experience immediate and lasting impacts in their interpersonal relationships (see Nanda, Reichert, Jones, & Flannery-Schroeder, 2016; Reichert & Flannery-Schroeder, 2014; Vettese, Dyer, Li, & Wekerle, 2011; Yoo, Park, & Jun, 2014). CEM is commonly experienced as a betrayal of trust from caregivers and can lead victims to extend mistrust to other people (Freyd & Birrell, 2013; Gobin & Freyd, 2013).  Cognitive approaches have emphasized the role of unhelpful beliefs (e.g., maladaptive schemas) in conceptualizing the association between CEM and romantic relationship functioning (Beck, 2011; Bruce, Heimberg, Goldin, & Goss). In contrast, acceptance-based approaches have emphasized the willingness to embrace thoughts and emotions while living in accordance with personal values (e.g., psychological flexibility; S. C. Hayes, Luoma, Bond, Masuda, & Lillis, 2006). Presently, I examined the relative mediating and moderating roles of schemas and psychological flexibility for explaining the link between CEM and romantic partner trust. With a greater understanding of how CEM impacts partner trust, we can better target assessment and treatment strategies to support victims of CEM and their relationship functioning.            2  Chapter 2: Literature Review Romantic Partner Trust and Childhood Emotional Maltreatment  Trust is a fundamental element of relationship wellbeing (Simpson, 2007). Romantic partner trust has been conceptualized as an interdependent and mutually supportive partnership (Kelley & Thibaut, 1978) and exists when each person believes that their partner is committed to their personal goals (Kramer & Carnevale, 2001).  The association between CEM and romantic partner trust has been well supported (e.g., Nanda, Reichert, Jones, & Flannery-Schroeder, 2016; Reichert & Flannery-Schroeder, 2014; Vettese, Dyer, Li, & Wekerle, 2011; Yoo, Park, & Jun, 2014). CEM includes verbal abuse (e.g., criticising) and emotional neglect (e.g., withholding comfort; Barnet, Miller-Perrin, & Perrin, 2005; Hart, Brassard, Binggeli, & Davidson, 2002). Children have been found to perceive CEM as a betrayal of trust from caregivers, which is confusing to children as they remain dependent on their caregivers for survival (Freyd, 1997). When children’s early experiences trusting others results in betrayal, they often generalize this mistrust to other people and relationships. This mistrust has been found to persist into adulthood (Freyd & Birrell, 2013; Gobin & Freyd, 2013; Rotter, 1967; Rempel, Holmes, & Zanna, 1985).  Maladaptive Schemas and CEM One explanation for the relation between CEM and romantic partner trust is the maladaptive schemas that often result from emotional maltreatment. The experience of CEM often leads children to believe that they are unloved, worthless, flawed, or unwanted (Glaser, 2002). These beliefs become maladaptive schemas when they are accepted as truths about the self (e.g., “I am worthless”) or others (e.g., “The world is unsafe”; Rezaei, Ghazanfari, & Rezaee, 2016; Wright et al., 2009).    3  CEM has been associated with both maladaptive self schemas and maladaptive other schemas. In trying to make sense of their emotional maltreatment, children often take responsibility (Babcock & DePrince, 2012) and internalize self-critical thoughts (e.g., “I am unlovable”; Gibb, 2002). As a result, a maladaptive working model of the self as unworthy, unintelligent, or powerless can develop instead of an adaptive model of the self as worthy of love and belonging (Wright, Crawford, & Del Castillo, 2009). Alternately, the perceived betrayal from trusted caregivers after experiencing CEM may result in placing blame on caregivers. Maladaptive other schemas may subsequently develop as beliefs are generalized to others (e.g., “Everyone has bad intentions”). In these instances, a maladaptive working model of others as dangerous and controlling may develop (Rezaei et al., 2016).  Maladaptive Schemas and Trust Maladaptive schemas that develop in childhood often persist into adulthood (Young, 1999). These schemas have been found to influence romantic relationships, particularly romantic partner trust (e.g., Bowlby, 1988; Michl, Handley, Rogosch, Cicchetti, & Toth, 2015; Pagura, Cox, Sareen, & Enns, 2006). Maladaptive self schemas may contribute to lower partner trust because people believe that they are inferior to partners, and undeserving of support, thereby decreasing engagement with partners (Wright et al., 2009; Lassri et al., 2016). Similarly, maladaptive other schemas may impede partner trust because people maintain emotional distance from partners to protect against perceived future emotional pain (Dorahy et al., 2009; Rezaei et al., 2016). Previous research has indicated that maladaptive other schemas lead people to avoid seeking support from others in favor of caring for their personal needs (Luyten, Fonagy, Lemma, & Target, 2012; Mikulincer & Shaver, 2007). While maladaptive self schemas have been found to have a stronger association with relationship functioning than maladaptive other schemas    4  (Yoo et al., 2014), the relative strength of self versus other schemas has yet to be investigated on romantic partner trust. Childhood Emotional Maltreatment and Psychological Flexibility Another possible explanation for the association between CEM and partner trust is psychological flexibility. People who are psychologically flexible intentionally behave consistent with their values despite fluctuating experiences of hardships and ease (Hayes, Luoma, Bond, Masuda, & Lillis, 2006). Further, highly psychologically flexible people are not entangled with their thoughts and feelings. Rather, they experience thoughts and feelings as external to themselves, increasing their likelihood of accepting rather than avoiding unpleasant internal experiences and the situations that trigger them (Hayes et al., 2006).  CEM has been negatively associated with psychological flexibility in several studies. For example, the experience of maltreatment in childhood encourages avoidance rather than acceptance of emotional experiences (Briere & Jordan, 2009; Kroska, Miller, Roche, Kroska, & O’Hara, 2018), thus contributing to reduced psychological flexibility. Additionally, researchers have linked CEM with people being entangled with their thoughts and feelings (O’Mahen, Karl, Moberly, & Fedock, 2015). When people do not experience their thoughts and feelings as external to themselves, they are more likely to avoid than accept their experiences.  Psychological Flexibility and Partner Trust Beyond shaping internal perceptions, psychological flexibility has been associated with relationships generally and partner trust specifically. For example, people with higher psychological flexibility expressed a stronger sense of belonging in their interpersonal relationships than those with lower levels of psychological flexibility (Roush, Cukrowicz, Mitchell, Brown, & Seymour, 2018). Conversely, some parts of psychological inflexibility, such    5  as avoidance, contribute to interpersonal difficulties. Avoidant behaviors oppose the committed action required to engage in valued living (Gerhart, Baker, Hoerger, & Ronan, 2014). People with lower levels of psychological flexibility may avoid intimacy and have less trust in their romantic partners because vulnerability and trust in others may be perceived as risky and distressing.   Psychological flexibility may also impact trust via its buffering (i.e., moderating) effects. Several studies have found the buffering effects of psychological flexibility. For example, psychological flexibility has been found to buffer the relation between negative schemas and delusional thinking (Oliver, O’Connor, Jose, McLachlan, & Peters, 2012). For people with negative schemas, those with lower levels of psychological flexibility demonstrated increased delusional thinking compared to people with high levels of psychological flexibility. Psychological flexibility has also been shown to buffer the association between unmet psychosocial needs and psychological distress (Swash, Bramwell, & Hulbert-Williams, 2017). Given these findings, psychological flexibility may buffer the association between maladaptive schemas and romantic relationship trust. To date, no study has investigated this potential moderating effect.  Current Study The purpose of the present study was to improve the understanding of the potential mediators and moderators that impact the association between CEM and partner trust. I tested a mediated-moderation model of the associations between CEM, maladaptive schemas, psychological flexibility, and partner trust (see Figure 1).         6   Figure 1. Specific mediators between CEM and partner trust with psychological flexibility as a moderator. Figure	  1.	  Specific	  mediators	  and	  moderators	  between	  CEM	  and	  partner	  trust	  As seen in the figure below (Figure 2), I hypothesized that: (Hypothesis 1) maladaptive self schemas, (Hypothesis 2) maladaptive other schemas, and (Hypothesis 3) psychological flexibility would mediate the relation between CEM and partner trust. Given the previous research indicating that a negative-self view mediates the link between CEM and relationship wellbeing (Lassri & Shahar, 2012), I also hypothesized that: (Hypothesis 4) maladaptive self schemas would be a stronger mediator than maladaptive other schemas between childhood emotional maltreatment and partner trust. I then examined the relative strength of the three mediators (Research Question 1) – psychological flexibility, maladaptive self schemas, and maladaptive other schemas. Given the existing research support for the buffering impact of psychological flexibility, I hypothesized that: (Hypothesis 5) psychological flexibility would moderate (i.e., buffer) the association between maladaptive self schemas and partner trust; and (Hypothesis 6) psychological flexibility would moderate the effect of maladaptive other schemas on partner trust. Maladaptive Self Schemas Childhood Emotional Maltreatment Romantic Partner Trust Maladaptive Other Schemas Psychological Flexibility    7   Figure 2. Hypotheses of the associations between variables. Figure	  2.	  Hypotheses	  of	  the	  associations	  between	  variables	                 Maladaptive Self Schemas Childhood Emotional Maltreatment Romantic Partner Trust + –  Maladaptive Other Schemas –  + Psychological Flexibility + –  –    8  Chapter 3: Method Participants A sample of 231 adults participated in the study. Inclusion criteria were that participants were 19 years or older, fluent in English, and in a monogamous romantic relationship for at least one year. The mean age was 38.24 years (SD = 10.03) and ranged from 22 to 68 years. Participants were 52.8% women, 46.7% men, and 0.4% transgender; they were mostly Caucasian (82.3%), African American (5.6%), Hispanic (5.2%), and Asian (4.8%). The length of their romantic relationships ranged from 1 to 47 years, with a mean of 9.90 years (SD = 9.46). See table below for additional demographic information.  Table 1  Descriptive Statistics and Sample Demographics. Characteristic n (%)  Sex     Female 121 (52.8%)    Male 107 (46.7%)    Transgender 1 (0.4%) Age     25 or less 8 (3.5%)    26 to 35  100 (44.2%)    36 to 45 69 (30.5%)    46 to 55 31 (13.7%)    56 to 65 17 (7.5%)    66 and up 1 (0.4%) Highest level of education     Less than 12th grade 1 (0.4%)    High school or equivalent 25 (10.8%)    Some college/technical school 71 (30.7%)    College/university graduate 109 (47.2%)    Graduate degree (masters or doctoral) 23 (10.0%)    Other 2 (0.9%)  Table	  1	  Descriptive	  statistics	  and	  sample	  demographics	        9  Table 1 Continued  Descriptive Statistics and Sample Demographics. Characteristic n (%)  Race     Caucasian/White 190 (82.3%)    African American/Black 13 (5.6%)    Hispanic 12 (5.2%)    Asian 11 (4.8%)    Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander 2 (0.9%)    American Indian/Alaska Native 0 (0%)    Other 3 (1.3%)  Sexual orientation     Heterosexual 214 (93.4%)    Homosexual 5 (2.2%)    Bisexual 10 (4.4%)    Other 0 (0%) Relationship status     Partner not living together 42 (18.2%)    Partner living together 61 (26.4%)    Married 128 (55.4%)    Other 0 (0%) Length of current relationship     1 year 21(9.1%)    2 years 41 (17.7%)    3 to 4 years 22 (9.5%)    5 to 6 years 31 (13.4%)    7 to 8 years 21 (9.1%)    9 to 10 years 19 (8.2%)    11 to 15 years 26 (11.3%)    16 to 25 years 17 (7.4%)    26 to 35 years 27 (11.7%)    36 to 45 years 4 (1.7%)    46 years or more 1 (0.4%) Children     Yes 137 (59.8%)    No 92 (40.2%) Employment     Employed full time 172 (75.1%)    Employed part time 36 (15.7%)    Unemployed 11 (4.8%)    Student 1 (0.4%)    Other 9 (3.9%)     10  Table 1 Continued  Descriptive Statistics and Sample Demographics. Characteristic n (%)  Household income     $19,999 or less 12 (5.2%)    $20,000 to $39,999 55 (23.8%)    $40,000 to $59,999 51 (22.1%)    $60,000 to $79,999 61 (26.4%)    $80,000 to $99,999 20 (8.7%)    $100,000 or more 32 (13.9%)  Procedure Participants were recruited from the online crowdsourcing pool, Amazon’s Mechanical Turk (MTurk). Through MTurk, researchers can access diverse samples to complete Human Intelligence Tasks (HITs) online. MTurk participants (i.e., workers) are compensated by the researchers. MTurk is a commonly used participant pool in behavioral research as it allows rapid access to samples that are more representative of the population than typical participant pools (e.g., undergraduate students). Given that MTurk has over 500,000 workers, it is possible to access participants with specific characteristics who may be otherwise difficult to recruit (Paolacci & Chandler, 2014; Smith, Sabat, Martinez, Weaver, & Xu, 2015). MTurk workers have also been found to be more attentive to tasks than undergraduate students (Hauser & Schwarz, 2016). Another advantage of MTurk is that participants can be selectively recruited based on their history of providing quality data. In addition to selective recruitment, recommendations and procedures were followed to collect quality data and to minimize the misinterpretation of instructions, careless responding, and malingering (see Mason & Suri, 2012). Participants were compensated $2.50 USD for completing the study.      11  Measures Demographic Questionnaire. Demographic information including gender, age, racial background, relationship status, number of years in romantic relationship, number of children, level of education, employment, and income was collected from all participants (see Appendix D). Childhood Emotional Maltreatment (CEM). The Childhood Trauma Questionnaire Short Form (CTQ-SF; Bernstein et al., 2003) is a 28-item self-report measure with five subscales. Consistent with previous research (e.g., Lassri et al., 2016), the 5-item subscales emotional abuse (e.g., “Someone in my family yelled and screamed at me”) and emotional neglect (e.g., reverse scored “My family was a source of strength and support”) were selected to measure CEM. Items were rated on a 5-point scale ranging from 1 (never true) to 5 (very often true). Total scores were derived by computing the sum of emotional abuse and emotional neglect items, higher scores indicated more emotional maltreatment in childhood. In a recent review, the CTQ-SF demonstrated high indices of specificity and sensitivity relative to a similar measure (i.e., Complex Trauma Inventory; Spinhoven & Penninx, 2014). The CTQ is a widely used measure that has been validated for use as a brief assessment of childhood maltreatment (Bernstein et al., 2003). Cronbach’s alpha for the CTQ emotional maltreatment score for the present study was .95.  Maladaptive Schemas. The Evaluative Beliefs Scale (EBS; Chadwick, Trower, & Dagnan, 1999) measures maladaptive schemas about the self and others. The EBS is an 18-item measure with three subscales. For the purposes of this study, two subscales, the self-critical subscale (e.g., “I am unlovable”) and the other critical subscale (e.g., “Other people are bad”) were used to measure maladaptive schemas about the self and others. Participants rated how    12  much they agreed or disagreed with each item 0 (disagree slightly or disagree strongly) to 3 (agree strongly). The possible score on each subscale ranged from 0 to 18 with higher scores indicating stronger negative beliefs about the self or others. The EBS has been found to demonstrate good internal reliability with a Cronbach’s alpha of .90 for the self-self scale and .86 for the self-other scale (Chadwick et al., 1999). The EBS demonstrated concurrent validity via correlations with scores on measures of related constructs (e.g., anxiety and depression; Chadwick et al., 1999). The present coefficient alpha for the self-critical subscale was .92, and other critical subscale was .88.  Romantic Partner Trust. The Trust in Close Relationships Scale (TCRS; Rempel, Holmes, & Zanna, 1985) was selected to measure trust in romantic partners. The TCRS is a 17-item measure with three subscales: Predictability (e.g., “My partner behaves in a very consistent manner”), dependability (e.g., “I can rely on my partner to keep the promises he/she makes to me”), and faith (e.g., “When I am with my partner I feel secure in facing unknown situations”). Each item is scored on a 7-point scale ranging from 1 (strongly disagree) to 7 (strongly agree). The TCRS scores have been found to demonstrate good internal consistency (Cronbach alpha’s = .81; Rempel et al., 1985). Predictive and convergent validity have been supported via correlations with scores on measures of related relationship constructs (e.g., happiness and love; Rempel et al., 1985). Total scores were derived by computing the sum of item responses with higher scores indicating greater partner trust. Cronbach’s alpha in the present study was .95. Psychological Flexibility. The Comprehensive assessment of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy processes (CompACT) is a 23-item self-report measure of psychological flexibility (Francis, Dawson, & Golijani-Moghaddam, 2016). It consists of three subscales: Openness to experience (e.g., “I can take thoughts and feelings as they come, without attempting    13  to control or avoid them”), behavioral awareness (e.g., reverse scored “I find it difficult to stay focused on what’s happening in the present”), and valued action (e.g., “I can identify the things that really matter to me in life and pursue them”). The items are scored on a seven-point scale ranging from 0 (strongly disagree) to 6 (strongly agree).  Total scores were derived by computing the sum of item responses with higher scores indicating greater psychological flexibility. CompACT scores have demonstrated good internal consistency (Cronbach’s alpha of .91) and convergent validity with another measure of psychological flexibility (Francis et al., 2016). Cronbach’s alpha in the present study was .93. Intimate Partner Violence. The revised Conflict Tactics Scale-Short Form (CTS2S; Straus & Douglas, 2004) was used to screen for intimate partner violence. The CTS2S was included as a covariate to control for mistrust due to intimate partner violence. It is comprised of 20 items assessing prevalence of intimate partner violence (e.g., “My partner pushed, shoved, or slapped me”). Participants indicated the prevalence of each experience from 1 (Once in the past year) to 6 (More than 20 times in the past year) with 7 (Not in the past year, but it did happen before) and 8 (This has never happened). Consistent with scoring guidelines, responses were transformed so that if respondents had experienced the event it was re-scored a 1 and if not it was re-scored a 0. An intimate partner violence prevalence score was derived by computing the sum of the re-scored item responses for four of the five subscales (i.e., injury, sexual coercion, physical assault, and psychological aggression), with higher scores indicating more intimate partner violence. The CTS2S has demonstrated construct and concurrent validity with the full CTS2 (Straus & Douglas, 2004). Cronbach’s alpha in the present study was .97.      14  Data Analytic Plan Ordinary least squares regression with bootstrapping was used in the PROCESS Macro in SPSS to examine simple and multiple mediation (Hayes, 2013). Bootstrapping generates an estimate of the mediating (i.e., indirect) effect by resampling with replacement the indirect effect’s sampling distribution. If zero does not fall between the upper and lower 95% confidence intervals, the indirect effect is considered statistically significant.  I conducted three simple mediation models to examine the conditional indirect effects between CEM and partner trust through each mediating variable (i.e., psychological flexibility, maladaptive self schemas, and maladaptive other schemas) separately. This indirect effect indicates how partner trust is associated with CEM through psychological flexibility and maladaptive self and other schemas. Then I conducted a multiple mediation analysis to examine the relative mediating effects of each mediating variable (i.e., maladaptive self schemas, maladaptive other schemas, and psychological flexibility), while holding the other mediators constant. Finally, I examined if psychological flexibility moderated (i.e., buffered) the association between maladaptive schemas and trust. All coefficients were standardized to facilitate interpreting the associations between variables.           15  Chapter 4: Results Preliminary Analyses  Preliminary data analyses were done to screen for missing responses, and univariate and multivariate outliers. Two univariate outliers were identified through boxplots. Nine multivariate outliers were found using Mahalanobis Distance. I reviewed each outlier, and there were no indications of invalid responding. Further, I ran analyses with and without outliers and found no notable differences, thus all data were retained. Next, the data were scanned for non-normality through visual inspection of univariate histograms, and kurtosis and skewness statistics. All scales, with the exception of the Evaluative Beliefs Scale, were normally distributed. The Evaluative Beliefs Scale was transformed using the appropriate data transformation technique (i.e., inverse transformation; Tabachnick & Fidell, 2013). The assumption of homoscedasticity was met as the scatterplot of standardized residuals and standardized predicted values did not vary systematically. The residuals were visually inspected and were normally distributed in the P-P plot. Age and gender were not significantly correlated with the primary study variables so were not included as covariates. As hypothesized, intimate partner violence was significantly correlated with partner trust (r = -.317, p < .01); thus, I controlled for intimate partner violence in all models predicting trust. Descriptive statistics and bivariate correlations of untransformed data are presented in Table 2. All reported parameter estimates in the regression models were standardized to facilitate interpretation.        16  Table 2 Bivariate correlations and descriptive statistics for primary variables. Variable 1 2 3 4 5 6 1. Childhood Emotional Maltreatment —      2. Maladaptive Self Schemas .297** —     3. Maladaptive Other Schemas .090 .146* —    4. Psychological Flexibility -.335** -.360** -.277** —   5. Romantic Partner Trust -.178** -.323** -.116 .550** —  6. Intimate Partner Violence .123 .107 .086 .232** -.317** — M 20.31 1.04 1.01 95.94 29.27 3.18 SD 9.85 2.89 2.36 22.76 19.82 4.85 Note: Correlations and descriptive statistics are based on untransformed scores. *p < .05, **p <.01. Table	  2	  Bivariate	  correlations	  Simple Mediation Models First, I ran three simple mediation models to examine the association between CEM and partner trust through maladaptive self schemas, maladaptive other schemas, and psychological flexibility (see Table 3).  Table 3 Standardized coefficients for simple mediation models examining association between childhood emotional maltreatment and romantic partner trust.  Mediator (M) Effect of IV on M (a) Effect of M on DV  (b) Direct Effect (c’) Indirect effect  (a x b) Indirect effect 95% CI Total effect (c) Maladaptive self schemas -.315*** .289*** -.054 -.091 -.166 to -.041 -.141* Maladaptive other schemas -.164* .185** -.113 -.030 -.077 to -.007 -.141* Psychological flexibility -.335*** .509*** .018 -.171 -.262 to -.101 -.141* Note: IV = childhood emotional maltreatment; DV = romantic partner trust; bolded confidence intervals do not include a zero, indicating a significant indirect effect. Intimate partner violence was controlled for in models predicting romantic partner trust.  *p < .05, **p < .01, ***p < .001. Table	  3	  Standardized	  coefficients	  for	  simple	  mediation	  models	  	        17  Supporting Hypothesis 1, maladaptive self schemas significantly mediated the association between CEM and romantic partner trust (see Figure 3).   Figure 3. Simple mediation model (standardized path coefficients) of childhood emotional maltreatment as a predictor of romantic partner trust, mediated by maladaptive self schemas. Intimate partner violence was controlled for in models predicting romantic partner trust.  *p < .05, **p < .01, ***p < .001. Figure	  3.	  Simple	  mediation	  model	  –	  self	  schemas	   Supporting Hypothesis 2, maladaptive other schemas significantly mediated the relation between CEM and partner trust (see Figure 4).   Figure 4. Simple mediation model (standardized path coefficients) of childhood emotional maltreatment as a predictor of romantic partner trust, mediated by maladaptive other schemas. Intimate partner violence was controlled for in models predicting romantic partner trust.  *p < .05, **p < .01, ***p < .001. Figure	  4.	  Simple	  mediation	  model	  –	  other	  schemas	     a = -.315*** Direct effect, c’= -.054 Indirect effect, a*b = -.091, 95% CI [-.166 to -.041] Maladaptive Self Schemas Childhood Emotional Maltreatment Romantic Partner Trust b = .289*** a = -.164*  Direct effect, c’ = -.113 Indirect effect, a*b = -.030, 95% CI [-.077 to -.007]  Maladaptive Other Schemas Childhood Emotional Maltreatment Romantic Partner Trust b = .185**     18  Finally, in support of Hypothesis 3, psychological flexibility mediated the association between CEM and partner trust (see Figure 5).  Figure 5. Simple mediation model (standardized path coefficients) of childhood emotional maltreatment as a predictor of romantic partner trust, mediated by psychological flexibility. Intimate partner violence was controlled for in models predicting romantic partner trust.  *p < .05, **p < .01, ***p < .001. Figure	  5.	  Simple	  mediation	  model	  –	  psychological	  flexibility	   Multiple Mediation Models  Maladaptive Self Schemas and Maladaptive Other Schemas as Mediators I ran a multiple mediation model to examine the relative indirect effects of maladaptive self schemas and maladaptive other schemas on partner trust. In support of Hypothesis 4, maladaptive self schemas significantly mediated the association between CEM and partner trust, while other schemas did not (see Figure 6 and Table 4). The mediating effect of maladaptive other schemas was 28.2% as strong as the mediating effect of maladaptive self schemas.        a = -.335***  Direct effect, c’ = .018 Indirect effect, a*b = -.171, 95% CI [-.262 to -.101]  Psychological Flexibility Childhood Emotional Maltreatment Romantic Partner Trust b = .509***    19   Figure 6. Multiple mediation model (standardized path coefficients) of childhood emotional maltreatment as a predictor of romantic partner trust, mediated by maladaptive self and other schemas. Intimate partner violence was controlled for in models predicting romantic partner trust.  *p < .05, **p < .01, ***p < .001. Figure	  6.	  Multiple	  mediation	  model	  –	  self	  and	  other	  maladaptive	  schemas	   Table 4  Standardized coefficients for maladaptive self schemas and maladaptive other schemas mediating the association of childhood emotional maltreatment with romantic partner trust. Dependent Variable (DV)  Mediator (M) Effect of IV on M (a) Effect of M on DV  (b) Direct Effect (c’) Indirect effect  (a x b) Indirect effect 95% CI Total effect (c) Romantic Partner Trust Total Effect   -.050 -.096 -.179 to -.043 -.141* Maladaptive self schemas -.315*** .253***  -.079 -.165 to -.027  Maladaptive other schemas -.164* .098  -.016 -.059 to .005  Note: IV = childhood emotional maltreatment; DV = romantic partner trust; bolded confidence intervals do not include a zero, indicating a significant indirect effect. Intimate partner violence was controlled for in models predicting romantic partner trust. *p < .05, **p < .01, ***p < .001. Table	  4	  Standardized	  coefficients for	  maladaptive	  self	  and	  other	  schemas	      Maladaptive Self Schemas Childhood Emotional Maltreatment Romantic Partner Trust Direct effect, c’ = -.050 Total effect, c = -.141* a1 = -.315*** b1 = .253*** Maladaptive Other Schemas b2 = .098 a2 = -.164*    20  Final Model: Including All Three Mediators To investigate the relative strength of each mediator in the association between CEM and partner trust (i.e., Research Question 1), a multiple mediation model was tested to examine the relative indirect effects of maladaptive self schemas, maladaptive other schemas, and psychological flexibility on partner trust. Psychological flexibility was the only significant mediator in the association between CEM and trust (see Figure 7 and Table 5). In comparison to the mediating effect of psychological flexibility, the mediating effects of maladaptive self and other schemas were 28.9% and 1.1% as strong, respectively.  Figure 7. Multiple mediation model (standardized path coefficients) of childhood emotional maltreatment as a predictor of romantic partner trust, mediated by maladaptive self and other schemas, and psychological flexibility. Intimate partner violence was controlled for in models predicting romantic partner trust.  *p < .05, **p < .01, ***p < .001. Figure	  7.	  Multiple	  mediation	  model	  –	  three	  mediators	  	      Maladaptive Self Schemas Childhood Emotional Maltreatment Romantic Partner Trust Direct effect, c’ = .047 Total effect, c = -.141* a1 = -.315*** b1 = .142* Maladaptive Other Schemas b2 = .010 a2 = -.164* Psychological Flexibility a3 = -.335*** b3 = .460***    21  Table 5  Standardized coefficients for maladaptive schemas and psychological flexibility mediating the association of childhood emotional maltreatment with romantic partner trust.  Dependent Variable (DV)  Mediator (M) Effect of IV on M (a) Effect of M on DV  (b) Direct Effect (c’) Indirect effect  (a x b)  Indirect effect 95% CI Total effect (c) Romantic Partner Trust Total Effect   .047 -.200 -.306 to -.117 -.141* Maladaptive self schemas -.315*** .142*  -.045 -.106 to .000  Maladaptive other schemas -.164* .010  -.002 -.030 to .024  Psychological flexibility -.335*** .460***  -.154 -.236 to -.090  Note: IV = childhood emotional maltreatment; DV = romantic partner trust; bolded confidence intervals do not include a zero, indicating a significant indirect effect. Intimate partner violence was controlled for in models predicting romantic partner trust. *p < .05, **p < .01, ***p < .001. Table	  5	  Standardized	  coefficients	  for	  maladaptive	  schemas	  and	  psychological	  flexibility	  Mediated Moderation Model Next, I examined whether psychological flexibility moderated (i.e., buffered) the association between maladaptive self schemas and maladaptive other schemas on partner trust (See Figure 8). Inconsistent with Hypothesis 5, psychological flexibility did not moderate the effect of maladaptive self schemas on partner trust (b = -.021, p = .726). Inconsistent with Hypothesis 6, psychological flexibility did not significantly moderate the effect of maladaptive other schemas on partner trust (b = .096, p = .130). Collectively, these results indicate that psychological flexibility did not moderate the effect of maladaptive schemas on romantic partner trust.       22   Figure 8. Model of childhood emotional maltreatment as a predictor of romantic partner trust, mediated by maladaptive self and other schemas, and psychological flexibility. Psychological flexibility is also included as a moderator in the model.  All path coefficients are standardized.  Intimate partner violence was controlled for in models predicting romantic partner trust.  *p < .05, **p < .01, ***p < .001. Figure	  8.	  Mediated	  moderation	              Maladaptive Self Schemas Childhood Emotional Maltreatment Romantic Partner Trust a1 = -.315*** b1 = .139 Maladaptive Other Schemas b2 = .047 a2 = -.164* Psychological Flexibility a3 = -.335*** b3 = .453*** Direct effect, c’ = .053 Total effect, c = -.141* b4 = -.021 b5 = .096    23  Chapter 5: Discussion General Discussion  The purpose of the present study was to better understand the association between CEM and romantic partner trust. I examined three potential mediators between CEM and partner trust: psychological flexibility, maladaptive self schemas, and maladaptive other schemas. The present study builds on the extant literature by demonstrating the importance of psychological flexibility as a mediator in the association between CEM and trust.  The results indicate that psychological flexibility is a more potent mediator than either maladaptive self schemas or maladaptive other schemas in the association between CEM and partner trust. Psychological flexibility may have emerged as a strong mediator because of psychological flexibility’s particular relevance when developing trust. Psychological flexibility is comprised of intentional effort, valued living, and willingness to accept distressing experiences (Hayes et al., 2006). The components that make up psychological flexibility are similar to those that have been found to facilitate romantic partner trust: intentional effort, value-congruence, and vulnerability in relationships (Lewicki, Tomlinson, & Gillespie, 2006; McKinnon & Greenberg, 2017). Thus, people with high psychological flexibility may possess the intentionality and other qualities that facilitate building partner trust (Gerhart et al., 2014; McKinnon & Greenberg, 2017).   While psychological flexibility was a strong mediator of CEM and partner trust, an unexpected finding was that psychological flexibility did not moderate the association between maladaptive schemas and trust. In line with previous research on the buffering effects of psychological flexibility (Oliver et al., 2012; Silberstein, Tirch, Leahy, & McGinn, 2012; Swash et al., 2017), I had anticipated that higher levels of psychological flexibility would buffer the    24  effect of maladaptive schemas on trust; with increased levels of psychological flexibility it was expected that maladaptive schemas would be less impactful. One possible reason psychological flexibility did not act as a significant moderator is because schemas are resistant to change, and are therefore challenging to detach from. Schemas develop at an early age and are foundational to how people view themselves, others, and the world (Fischer, Smout, & Delfabbro, 2016; Young, 1999). Thus, psychological flexibility may have less impact on the association between maladaptive schemas and trust, and a greater impact on emotions and thoughts that surface in the present moment (e.g., anxious thoughts about the future, moments of sadness). Although psychological flexibility did not buffer the effects of schemas on trust, the findings suggest psychological flexibility competes with schemas to explain the association between CEM and trust.  The results extend the literature on the mediating effects of maladaptive schemas. To my knowledge, this is the first study to contrast the mediating impacts of maladaptive self-schemas and maladaptive-other schemas between CEM and partner trust. While I hypothesized that maladaptive self-schemas would have a greater mediating effect than maladaptive other-schemas, I did not anticipate the extent to which this hypothesis would be supported. When maladaptive self schemas and maladaptive other schemas were entered in the same model, the mediating effect of maladaptive other schemas were no longer significant. The results extend the existing literature that negative internal working models of the self impact individual psychological wellbeing (Glaser, 2002; Lassri et al., 2016; Wright et al., 2009), and also impede interpersonal wellbeing, such as romantic partner trust.         25  Practical Implications The finding that psychological flexibility had a strong mediating impact on the association between CEM and partner trust may have implications for practitioners, particularly those assisting people with a history of CEM. The results indicate that attending to and increasing psychological flexibility may be more beneficial for increasing partner trust than attempting to alter the foundational beliefs characteristic of maladaptive schemas. For example, specific Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) interventions have demonstrated clinical effectiveness in increasing psychological flexibility such as, exploration and identification of values, skills focused on detaching from thoughts, and acceptance of emotional experiences (Bohlmeijer, Fledderus, Rokx, & Pieterse, 2011).  This study may also contribute to clinical work with couples who present with low levels of trust, in addition to promoting the development of specific clinical interventions to support clients with a history of childhood emotional maltreatment. Preliminary research indicates that couples can benefit from interventions that facilitate psychological flexibility in their relationships (Peterson, Eifert, Feingold, & Davidson, 2009). In ACT-based couples’ therapy, interventions are aimed at reducing entanglement with thoughts and feelings about their relationships. Couples are also encouraged to build awareness of the negative relational cycles partners often feel stuck in. Value-directed action interventions are modified to support couples in identifying and engaging in relationship values (e.g., open communication, honesty, and commitment). Considering psychological flexibility’s significant mediating impact in the association between CEM and partner trust, the present study indicates that ACT interventions are well suited for couples who present with low partner trust. In addition to ACT interventions, it is important for clinicians to be aware of the negative impact that CEM has on psychological    26  flexibility and romantic partner trust to create informed treatment plans when working with couples.  Limitations and Future Directions  This research contributes to a deeper understanding of CEM and partner trust, however some limitations are important to note. First, a cross-sectional design was used, and although the study was informed by existing theory on the linear associations between CEM and partner trust, future research should consider using longitudinal designs to examine the temporal associations of the constructs. A second limitation was that data were collected online. Although MTurk workers have been found to be as attentive as traditional samples (i.e., undergraduate students; Hauser & Schwarz, 2016), concerns about the misinterpretation of questions and careless responding are still important to consider. Third, all data were self-reported. Future research would benefit from using alternate data collection strategies (i.e., partner reports), to obtain a more objective measure of trust, to examine if self reported and partner reported trust are consistent. A final limitation was that the sample was relatively homogenous; participants were recruited from MTurk and the majority of MTurk workers are Caucasian. Future research would benefit from collecting data from more diverse samples to determine whether these results generalize to other populations.          27  References Babcock, R. L., & DePrince, A. P. (2012). Childhood betrayal trauma and self-blame appraisals among survivors of intimate partner abuse. Journal of Trauma and Dissociation, 13(5), 526–538. http://doi.org/10.1080/15299732.2012.694842 Barnet, O., Miller-Perrin, C. L., & Perrin, R. D. (2005). Child psychological maltreatment. In O. Barnet, C. L. Miller-Perrin, & R. D. Perrin (Eds.), Family Violence Across the Lifespan: An Introduction (2nd ed., pp. 151–178). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications. Bernstein, D. P., Stein, J. A., Newcomb, M. D., Walker, E., Pogge, D., Ahluvalia, T., … Zule, W. (2003). 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H., & Jun, H. J. (2014). Early maladaptive schemas as predictors of interpersonal orientation and peer connectedness in university students. Social Behavior and    34  Personality, 42(8), 1377–1394. http://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.2014.42.8.1377 Young, J. E. (1999). Cognitive therapy for personality disorders: A schema-focused approach. Sarasota, FL: Professional Resources Press.                        35   Appendix A: Consent Form Consent for participation Partner Trust and  Childhood Emotional Maltreatment:  Considering the Roles of Maladaptive Schemas and Psychological Flexibility  Principal Investigator  Dr. Daniel Cox, Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology, The University of British Columbia.   Co-Investigator  Leah Baugh, MA candidate, Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology and Special Education, The University of British Columbia. This research is being conducted as part of Leah’s graduate thesis. Leah can be contacted at: leah.baugh@alumni.ubc.ca.  Purpose of this Study  The purpose of this research is to gain a greater understanding of the relationship between childhood and adulthood stressors, beliefs about self and others, romantic relationships, and psychological distress.   Procedure and Remuneration  This study consists of several survey questionnaires (e.g., measure of trust in a partner relationship) that will be administered in an online survey format. Completion of this study will take approximately 25 minutes. Each participant will receive an honorarium in the amount of $2.50 USD.   Research Confidentiality  Participant surveys will be assigned an arbitrary number to ensure confidentiality. No personally identifying information (e.g., name) are collected. All digital files of online surveys and backups of the surveys will be password protected and encrypted. Only people directly involved in the study will have access to these.   Potential Risks and Benefits of this Evaluation  Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology, and Special Education 2125 Main Mall Vancouver, BC Canada V6T 1Z4 Tel: (604) 827-1828     36  While completing questionnaires, participants may experience discomfort while recalling childhood events and reflecting on current beliefs and emotions. There is the possibility of experiencing physiological arousal (e.g., increased heart-rate) or heightened emotionality (e.g., feelings of anxiety). Resources will be provided for seeking support for participants who experience some amount of distress.   Benefits of participating in this study may include a greater understanding of your romantic relationship and insights into your beliefs. In addition, results generated from this study may benefit those who experience childhood or adulthood stressors in their relationships, and those who have experienced childhood stressors.  Participation in the study is voluntary and participants can withdraw at any time without penalty.  Contact for information about the study  If you have any questions or desire further information with respect to this study, you may contact Dr. Cox or Leah Baugh at (leah.baugh@alumni.ubc.ca)    Contact for concerns about the rights of research subjects  If you have any concerns or complaints about your rights as a research participant and/or your experiences while participating in this study, contact the Research Participant Complaint Line in the UBC Office of Research Ethics at (604) 822-8598 or if long distance e-mail RSIL@ors.ubc.ca or call toll free 1-877-822-8598.   I have read and fully understand the information contained in this document. Any and all questions I have regarding the contents of this document have been answered to my satisfaction and I would like to participate in this study.   By clicking the box below, you consent to participate in the study.           37  Appendix B: Recruitment Ad  Partner Trust and Childhood Emotional Maltreatment:   Considering the Roles of Maladaptive Schemas and Psychological Flexibility  Recruitment - MTurk  1.   Are you currently in a monogamous, committed romantic relationship that has lasted a year or longer?  We are conducting an academic survey about childhood experiences, relationship dynamics and general beliefs about the self and the world. This study is being conducted by researchers at the University of British Columbia, under the guidance of the primary investigator Dr. Daniel Cox. To participate in the study, you must be 19 years or older, a resident of the U.S. and currently be in a monogamous, committed relationship that has lasted a year or longer. If you meet these criteria please click the link below to complete the survey. At the end of the survey, you will receive a code to paste into the box below to receive credit for taking our survey. Please do not select this HIT if you have already participated in this study. Make sure to leave this window open as you complete the survey. When you are finished, you will return to this page to paste the code into the box. Compensation is $2.50 USD and the study will take approximately 25 minutes.   If you have any questions or desire further information with respect to this study, you may contact Dr. Cox or Leah Baugh at (leah.baugh@alumni.ubc.ca)                            38  Appendix C: Debriefing Form Partner Trust and Childhood Emotional Maltreatment:   Considering the Roles of Maladaptive Schemas and Psychological Flexibility   Childhood emotional maltreatment is when children are emotionally neglected or abused. Emotional maltreatment in childhood is interpersonal in nature and often involves the betrayal of trust from a caregiver. The experience of repeated damaging interactions characterized by emotional maltreatment, communicates to children that they are worthless, unloved, flawed, and unwanted.  Maladaptive schemas are internalized negative beliefs about the self and the world and are used as a self-protective coping strategy when children’s needs are consistently unmet. As a result, a working model of the self as unworthy, unintelligent and powerless develops instead of a model of the self as worthy of love and belonging. Maladaptive schemas make it difficult for trust to develop because people fear criticism and disapproval from others and thus tend to distance themselves from closeness and intimacy.  While maladaptive schemas about the self and others are rigid and resistant to change, psychological flexibility involves an openness and acceptance of experience, mindfulness and committed action to live a valued life despite the presence of maladaptive schemas. In this study, you completed a series of questionnaires. These questionnaires are intended to provide us with an understanding of any childhood emotional maltreatment you might have experienced, your current level of trust with your romantic partner, the beliefs you have about yourself and the world, and your level of psychological flexibility. The current study seeks to understand the ways in which psychological flexibility is protective in the development of romantic partner trust for those who struggle with negative beliefs about themselves and others. We expect to find that people with higher levels of psychological flexibility will report having higher levels of partner trust, than those who have lower levels of psychological flexibility.  This study seeks to contribute to the existing research on treating maladaptive schemas and childhood emotional maltreatment. Ultimately, we hope that understanding the relationships between childhood emotional maltreatment, maladaptive schemas, psychological flexibility and romantic partner trust will contribute to clinical and research gains, and ultimately support those who have experienced childhood emotional maltreatment.  ARE YOU IN CRISIS?  *** If you are in a medical emergency, in immediate danger, or in a suicidal crisis, please call 911.  If you are concerned about your relationship, your behavior, or want someone to talk to about intimate partner violence, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline: (800) 799-SAFE (7233)   Please call 1-800-273-TALK to connect with a trained counselor at a crisis centre in your area 24/7 or visit the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline website for more information: http://www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org/     39  To learn more about childhood emotional maltreatment, please visit the following website: http://www.apa.org/news/press/releases/2014/10/psychological-abuse.aspx   To learn more about maladaptive schemas, please visit the following website: http://www.schematherapy.com/id63.htm   To learn more about psychological flexibility, please visit the following website: https://contextualscience.org/the_six_core_processes_of_act   To learn more about romantic partner trust and relationships, please visit the following website: http://www.apa.org/helpcenter/healthy-relationships.aspx                      40  Appendix D: Demographics Demographics questionnaire Please answer the questions below by filling in the blanks or circling the number of the response that best applies.  1. Your Age:  ____ years  2. Your gender:  1. Male      2. Female  3. Transgender  3. Highest level of education you have completed:  1. Less than 12th grade  2. High School or Equivalent  3. Some College/University  4. College/university graduate (received degree)  5. Graduate Degree (Masters or doctoral)  6.  Other: _____________________  4. Racial/Ethnic Background: 1.  Aboriginal/First Nations [Native American/American Indian] 2.  South Asian 3.  East Asian  4.  Middle Eastern 5.  African American/Black 6.  Hispanic 7.  Caucasian/White  8.  Other: _______________  5. What is your current relationship status?   1.   Single, never married  2.   Partner not living together, number of years: ___, number of months:_________   3.   Partner living together, number of years: ___, number of months:__________  4.   Married, number of years: ___, number of months:__________  5.   Divorced, number of years: ___, number of months:_______  6.   Separated, number of years: ___, number of months:__________  7.   Widowed, number of years: ___, number of months:__________  8.   Other: ______  6. Do you have children?  1.  Yes, how many:  ______  2.  No     41  7. Including your current partner (if applicable), how many romantic partners have you had in the past 12 months? ___  8. Are you currently: 1.   Employed full-time 2.   Employed part-time or causally 3.   Unemployed 4.   Student 5.   Other: _____ (make so can have up to 2)  9. Over the past 12 months, what was your household income?   1.  $19,999 or less  2.  $20,000 to $39,999  3.  $40,000 to $59,999  4.  $60,000 to $79,999  5.  $80,000 or more  10. What is your religious affiliation? (circle one)  1.  Christian  2.  Jewish  3.  Latter-Day Saint  4.  Muslim  5.  Hindu  6.  Buddhist  7.  Agnostic  8.  Atheist  9.  Other _____________  11. What is the answer to the following question? 2+6=____  12. From what state are you filling out this survey? ____           42  Appendix E: Childhood Trauma Questionnaire - SF Childhood Trauma Questionnaire – Short Form Copyright 1995 David P. Bernstein, Ph.D.  Directions: These questions ask about some of your experiences growing up as a child and a teenager. For each question, please indicate which statement best describes how you feel by writing the appropriate number from the scale below on the line beside each item. Although some of these questions are of a personal nature, please try to answer as honestly as you can. Your answers will be kept confidential.  1 2 3 4 5 Never Rarely Sometimes Often True Very Often True When I was growing up…, _____ 1.   I didn’t have enough to eat. _____ 2.   I knew that there was somewhere there to take care of me and protect me. _____ 3.   People in my family called me things like “stupid”, “lazy”, or “ugly”. _____ 4.   My parents were too drunk or high to take care of the family. _____ 5.   There was someone in my family who helped me feel important or special. _____ 6.   I had to wear dirty clothes. _____ 7.   I felt loved. _____ 8.   I thought that my parents wished I had never been born. _____ 9.   I got hit so hard by someone in my family that I had to see a doctor or go to the hospital. _____ 10. There was nothing I wanted to change about my family. _____ 11. People in my family hit me so hard that it left me with bruises or marks. _____ 12. I was punished with a belt, a board, a cord (or some other hard object). _____ 13. People in my family looked out for each other. _____ 14. People in my family said hurtful or insulting things to me. _____ 15. I believe that I was physically abused. _____ 16. I had the perfect childhood. _____ 17. I got hit or beaten so badly that it was noticed someone like a teacher, neighbor, or doctor. _____ 18. Someone in my family hated me.    43   Emotional abuse Items: 3, 8, 14, 18, 25 Physical abuse Items: 9, 11, 12, 15, 17 Sexual abuse Items: 20, 21, 23, 24, 27 Emotional Neglect Items: 5(R), 7(R), 13(R), 19(R), 28(R)  Physical neglect Items: 1, 2(R), 4, 6, 26(R) Denial Items: 10, 16, 22                        _____ 19. People in my family felt close to each other. _____ 20. Someone tried to touch me in a sexual way or tried to make me touch them. _____ 21. Someone threatened to hurt me or tell lies about me unless I did something sexual with them. _____ 22. I had the best family in the world. _____ 23. Someone tried to make me do sexual things or watch sexual things. _____ 24. Someone molested me (took advantage of me sexually). _____ 25. I believe that I was emotionally abused. _____ 26. There was someone to take me to the doctor if I needed it. _____ 27. I believe that I was sexually abused. _____ 28. My family was a source of strength and support.    44  Appendix F: Evaluative Beliefs Scale Evaluative Beliefs Scale  1 2 3 4 5 Disagree Strongly Disagree Slightly Unsure Agree  Slightly Agree  Strongly  Scale One: Maladaptive Self Schemas _____ 1.  I am a total failure _____ 2.  I am worthless _____ 3.  I am totally weak and helpless _____ 4.  I am a bad person _____ 5.  I am an inferior person _____ 6.  I am unlovable   Scale Three: Maladaptive Other Schemas _____ 13. Other people are worthless _____ 14. Other people are inferior to me _____ 15. Other people are total failures _____ 16. Other people are totally weak and helpless _____ 17. Other people are bad _____ 18. Other people are unlovable                     45  Appendix G: CompACT Comprehensive Assessment of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy Scale  Please rate the following 23 statements using the scale below:  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Strongly Disagree Moderately Disagree Slightly Disagree Neither Agree nor Disagree Slightly Agree Moderately Agree Strongly Agree  _____ 1.   I can identify the things that really matter to me in life and pursue them _____ 2.   One of my big goals is to be free from painful emotions _____ 3.   I rush through meaningful activities without being really attentive to them _____ 4.   I try to stay busy to keep thoughts or feelings from coming _____ 5.   I act in ways that are consistent with how I wish to live my life _____ 6.   I get so caught up in my thoughts that I am unable to do the things that I most want to do _____ 7.   I make choices based on what is important to me, even if it is stressful _____ 8.   I tell myself that I shouldn’t have certain thoughts _____ 9.   I find it difficult to stay focused on what’s happening in the present _____ 10. I behave in line with my personal values _____ 11. I go out of my way to avoid situations that might bring difficult thoughts, feelings, or sensations _____ 12. Even when doing the things that matter to me, I find myself doing them without paying attention _____ 13. I am willing to fully experience whatever thoughts, feelings and sensations come up for me, without trying to change or defend against them _____ 14. I undertake things that are meaningful to me, even when I find it hard to do so _____ 15. I work hard to keep out upsetting feelings _____ 16. I do jobs or tasks automatically, without being aware of what I'm doing _____ 17. I am able to follow my long terms plans including times when progress is slow _____ 18. Even when something is important to me, I’ll rarely do it if there is a chance it will upset me    46  _____ 19. It seems I am "running on automatic" without much awareness of what I'm doing _____ 20. Thoughts are just thoughts – they don’t control what I do _____ 21. My values are really reflected in my behaviour _____ 22. I can take thoughts and feelings as they come, without attempting to control or avoid them _____ 23. I can keep going with something when it’s important to me                        47  Appendix H: Trust Scale Trust Scale (Rempel, Holmes & Zanna, 1985) – Trust within close interpersonal relationships Instructions:  Using the 7 point scale shown below, indicate the extent to which you agree or disagree with the following statements as they relate to someone with whom you have a close interpersonal relationship. Place your rating in the box to the right of the statement.  -3 -2 -1 0 1 2 3 Strongly Disagree   Neutral   Strongly Agree  _____ 1.   My partner has proven to be trustworthy and I am willing to let him/her engage in activities which other partners find too threatening. _____ 2.   Even when I don’t know how my partner will react, I feel comfortable telling him/her anything about myself, even those things of which I am
ashamed. _____ 3.   Though times may change and the future is uncertain, I know my partner will always be ready and willing to offer me strength _____ 4.   I am never certain that my partner won’t do something that I dislike or will embarrass me. _____ 5.   My partner is very unpredictable. I never know how he/she is going to act from one day to the next. _____ 6.   I feel very uncomfortable when my partner has to make decisions which will affect me personally. _____ 7.   I have found that my partner is unusually dependable, especially when it comes to things which are important to me. _____ 8.   My partner behaves in a very consistent manner. _____ 9.   Whenever we have to make an important decision in a situation we have never encountered before, I know my partner will be concerned
about my welfare. _____ 10. Even if I have no reason to expect my partner to share things with me, I still feel certain that he/she will. _____ 11. I can rely on my partner to react in a positive way when I expose my weaknesses to him/her. _____ 12. When I share my problems with my partner, I know he/she will respond in a loving way even before I say anything. _____ 13. I am certain that my partner would not cheat on me, even if the opportunity arose and there was no chance that he/she would get
caught.    48  _____ 14. I sometimes avoid my partner because he/she is unpredictable and I fear saying or doing something which might create conflict. _____ 15. I can rely on my partner to keep the promises he/she makes to me. _____ 16. When I am with my partner, I feel secure in facing unknown new situations. _____ 17. Even when my partner makes excuses which sound rather unlikely, I am confident that he/she is telling the truth.                       49  Appendix I: Revised Conflict Tactics Scale - SF Revised Conflict Tactics Scale – Short Form (CTS2S)  No matter how well a couple gets along, there are times when they disagree, get annoyed with the other person, want different things from each other, or just have spats or fights because they are in a bad mood, are tired or for some other reason. Couples also have many different ways of trying to settle their differences. This is a list of things that might happen when you have differences. Please mark how many times you did each of these things in the past year, and how many times your partner did them in the past year. If you or your partner did not do one of these things in the past year, but it happened before that, mark a “7" on your answer sheet for that question. If it never happened, mark an “8" on your answer sheet.  How often did this happen?  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Once in the Past Year Twice in the past year 3 to 5 times in the past year 6 to 10 times in the past year 11 to 20 times in the past year More than 20 times in the past year Not in the past year, but it did happen before  This has never happened  _____ 1.    I explained my side or suggested a compromise for a disagreement with my partner. _____ 2.    My partner explained his or her side or suggested a compromise for a disagreement with me _____ 3.    I insulted or swore or shouted or yelled at my partner _____ 4.    My partner insulted or swore or shouted or yelled at me _____ 5.    I had a sprain, bruise, or small cut, or felt pain the next day because of a fight with my partner _____ 6.    My partner had a sprain, bruise, or small cut or felt pain the next day because of a fight with me _____ 7.    I showed respect for, or showed that I cared about my partner’s feelings about an issue we disagreed on _____ 8.    My partner showed respect for, or showed that he or she cared about my feeling about an issue we disagreed on _____ 9.    I pushed, shoved, or slapped my partner _____ 10.  My partner pushed, shoved, or slapped me _____ 11.  I punched or kicked or beat-up my partner    50    _____ 12.  My partner punched or kicked or beat-me-up _____ 13.  I destroyed something belonging to my partner or threatened to hit my partner _____ 14.  My partner destroyed something belonging to me or threatened to hit me _____ 15.  I went see a doctor (M.D.) or needed to see a doctor because of a fight with my partner _____ 16.  My partner went to see a doctor (M.D.) or needed to see a doctor because of a fight with me _____ 17.  I used force (like hitting, holding down, or using a weapon) to make my partner have sex _____ 18.  My partner used force (like hitting, holding down, or using a weapon) to make me have sex _____ 19.  I insisted on sex when my partner did not want to or insisted on sex without a condom (but did not use physical force) _____ 20.  My partner insisted on sex when I did not want to or insisted on sex without a condom (but did not use physical force) 

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