The relative specificity of excessive reassurance-seeking to depressive symptoms and diagnoses among clinical samples of adults and youth

Joiner T., Metalsky G., Gencoz F., Gencoz T.

JOURNAL OF PSYCHOPATHOLOGY AND BEHAVIORAL ASSESSMENT, vol.23, no.1, pp.35-41, 2001 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 23 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2001
  • Doi Number: 10.1023/a:1011039406970
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.35-41
  • Keywords: excessive reassurance-seeking, depression, INTERACTIONAL DESCRIPTION, INVENTORY, RESPONSES, CHILDREN, ANXIETY, STRESS
  • Middle East Technical University Affiliated: Yes


In addition to playing a role in the deterioration of depressed people's interpersonal environment, excessive reassurance-seeking may be implicated as a vulnerability factor for depression. If so, excessive reassurance-seeking should display relative specificity to depression versus other forms of psychopathology. Two studies of psychiatric inpatients (Study 1 on adults and Study 2 on children) tested this possibility. In Study 1 a Depressed group obtained higher reassurance-seeking scores than an Other Disorders group did. Similar findings were obtained in Study 2, such that depressed youth reported higher reassurance-seeking than nondepressed youth. Hence, these two studies of psychiatric inpatients provided reasonable support for the specificity of excessive reassurance-seeking to depression as compared to other forms of psychopathology.