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The role of fear of self and responsibility in obsessional doubt processes: a bayesian hierarchical model

Version 2 2024-06-03, 19:50
Version 1 2016-01-05, 14:06
journal contribution
posted on 2024-06-03, 19:50 authored by T Jaeger, R Moulding, Jeromy AnglimJeromy Anglim, F Aardema, M Nedeljkovic
The literature concerning obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) indicates that obsessions frequently imply negative evaluative beliefs regarding the self. The construct of the feared self has been used to describe the set of harmful attributes an individual worries they may possess. This study aimed to partially replicate previous research that demonstrated a relationship between feared-self beliefs and obsessional doubt in OCD-relevant contexts. The relationship between perceptions of personal responsibility and associated levels of doubt was also examined. Nonclinical participants (N = 221; 155 female; Mage = 26.4, SD = 9.2) were presented with vignettes related to checking and non OCD-relevant themes, which quantified doubt through the presentation of alternating reality-based (i.e., sensory) and possibility-based information. Of the total sample, 112 participants were randomly allocated to a personally relevant condition (in which the action implied in the vignettes was completed by the reader), and 109 were allocated to a second, other-relevant, condition (in which the action implied in the vignettes was completed by a proximal other). The results provided support for reasoning processes implicated in OCD, suggesting that feared-self beliefs may partially contribute to heightened levels of doubt in response to possibility vs. reality-based information in OCD-relevant contexts. Personal relevance contributed to greater baseline levels of doubt, but not to greater responses to the reality- and possibility-based statements accompanying the OCD-relevant vignette. Implications for theory and future research are discussed.



Journal of social and clinical psychology






New York, NY





Publication classification

C Journal article, C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2015, Guilford Press




Guilford Press