The Role of Guilt and Shame in Psychosocial Functioning in a Sample of Women With Borderline Personality Disorder.J Nerv Ment Dis. 2021 01; 209(1):13-16.JN
Individuals diagnosed with borderline personality disorder (BPD) experience significant and pervasive impairment in interpersonal, social, and vocational functioning, and accumulating evidence suggests that impairments in functioning often persist despite significant decreases in symptom severity. Previous research indicates that shame-proneness and guilt-proneness are associated with symptoms of BPD that can affect functioning (such as aggression toward others), but very few studies have examined the impact of shame-proneness and guilt-proneness on validated measures of psychosocial functioning. Forty women with BPD completed measures of shame-proneness and guilt-proneness, psychosocial functioning, and BPD symptom severity. Results from multiple regression analyses indicate that women with BPD who tend to experience higher levels of shame-proneness and lower levels of guilt-proneness report poor performance in school and work settings and in interpersonal relationships. Strengths of the study include the use of a validated measure of functioning as the primary outcome. Limitations and future directions are discussed.