Gardner, Kathryn Jane, Qualter, Pamela, Stylianou, Maria and Robinson, Andrea Jayne
Facial affect recognition in non-clinical adults with borderline personality features: The role of effortful control and rejection sensitivity.
Personality and Individual Differences, 49
Evidence linking borderline personality disorder (BPD) and impaired facial affect recognition is mixed. This study sought to understand potential moderators of this relationship – effortful control and rejection sensitivity – that might explain inconsistencies in past research. One hundred and fifty University students completed a facial affect recognition task and self-report measures of BPD, effortful control and rejection sensitivity. Results indicated that the combination of high BPD traits and low effortful control predicts difficulties in decoding anger. For neutral expressions, rejection sensitivity was not a significant moderator of the BPD-affect recognition relationship. We conclude that recognition of anger among BPDs is dependent upon levels of effortful control. Future research should investigate this in clinical BPDs with more extreme emotional dysfunction.