The association of biological and psychological attributions for depression with social support seeking intentions in individuals with depressive symptoms

Rebecca K. Blais, Keith D. Renshaw

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Research suggests that biological and psychological attributions for depression are related to professional help-seeking, but the association of these attributions with informal support seeking in social relationships is unknown. As social support is linked with recovery from depression and a lower likelihood of experiencing future episodes of depression, it is important to understand factors that influence an individual's decision to seek social support. Aims: The present study examined depressed individuals own attributions for their depressive symptoms (i.e. personal attributions), perceptions of a friend's attributions for these symptoms (i.e. perceived attributions), and the depressed individuals willingness to seek social support from that friend. Method: Eighty-six individuals experiencing at least mild depressive symptoms completed self-report measures of personal attributions, perceived attributions, and a social support seeking intentions scale. Results: Participants own attributions for depressive symptoms were unrelated to their willingness to seek social support. In contrast, perceived biological attributions were related to greater help-seeking intentions, whereas perceived psychological attributions were associated with lower support seeking intentions. Conclusions: These results suggest that decisions to seek social support are more influenced by perceptions of others beliefs about depression than one's own beliefs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)605-617
Number of pages13
JournalBehavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy
Volume40
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2012
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • causal attributions
  • Depression
  • relationships
  • social support

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'The association of biological and psychological attributions for depression with social support seeking intentions in individuals with depressive symptoms'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this