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Introduction to Overcoming Adversity

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Title: No Slide Title Author: Psychology Dept. Created Date: 4/5/2002 8:35:33 AM Document presentation format: On-screen Show (4:3) Company: Univ. of Texas at Arlington – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Introduction to Overcoming Adversity


1
  • Introduction to Overcoming Adversity

2
The Challenges and Risks
  • Many Children Face Serious Challenges During
    Development
  • E.g., in 2009, 14.3 of Americans Lived in
    Poverty
  • By Age
  • For children under 18 20.7
  • People aged 18 to 64 12.9
  • People aged 65 8.9
  • By Ethnicity (in 2000)
  • Non-Hispanic Whites 9.4
  • Asians 12.5
  • Hispanics 25.3
  • Blacks 25.8
  • Native Americans 25.9

3
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4
Characteristics of Poverty
  • Although Income per se Affects Development,
  • Poverty Is Not a Unitary Construct
  • Not as Severe in More Egalitarian Countries
  • When and for How Long in Poverty Matters Greatly
  • In U.S., Bradley et al. (2001) Poverty
    Includes
  • Unsafe Environments
  • Single-Parent Families
  • Less Time with Families
  • Fewer Models of Success
  • Harsher, Less Consistent Discipline
  • Social Prejudice and Stigmatization
  • Lowered Expectations from Self and Others

5
At Birth
  • Early Health Problems Often Emanate from
  • Poor Prenatal Care
  • Maternal Substance Abuse
  • Poor Nutrition During Pregnancy
  • Maternal Lifestyles That Increase the Likelihood
    of Infections (e.g., Smoking, Drug Use)
  • Living in a Neighborhood That
  • Contains Hazards Affecting
  • Fetal Development (e.g.,
  • Toxic Waste Dumps)

6
At Birth (cont.)
  • More Likely to Be Born
  • Prematurely
  • Significantly Higher Long Term Risk of Health,
    Cognition, and Behavioral Problems for Preemies
    Who Live First 3 Years of Life in Poverty
  • At a Low Birth Weight
  • With
  • Asphyxia
  • A Birth Defect
  • A Disability
  • Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
  • AIDS

7
In Childhood
  • More Respiratory Illnesses
  • Dental Problems
  • Obesity
  • Higher Blood Lead Levels
  • Iron Deficiency
  • Stunted Growth
  • Sensory Impairment
  • Depression
  • Less Likely to Receive Adequate Help
  • E.g., 3x Chance of Complications from
    Appendicitis and Meningitis and to Die from
    Injuries and Infections at Every Age

8
In Childhood (cont.)
  • Cognition
  • Starting in Infancy, Lower Cognitive Functioning
  • Kennedy et al. (1963)
  • 1st 6th Grade African American Students in SE
    U.S.
  • Mean IQ of Highest SES 25 Points Higher Than
    Lowest
  • Strongly Related to Maternal (and Paternal)
    Education
  • Especially Affects Verbal Development

9
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10
In Childhood (cont.)
  • Psychological Socioemotional Development
  • Not as Clear as Physical Health or Cognition
  • But Good Evidence for Increased Mental Illness
  • In Addition to Depression
  • Schizophrenia
  • Personality Disorders
  • Aggression and Delinquency
  • Not Consistent Effect on Substance
  • Abuse, Though

11
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12
Poor Families
  • Low-SES Families
  • More Threatening and Uncontrollable Life Events
  • More Environmental Hazards and Violence
  • Higher Risk of Destabilizing Events
  • E.g., Family Dissolution Household Moves

13
Poor Families (cont.)
  • Chronic Strain of Unstable Employment and
    Persistent Economic Hardship Can Lead to
  • Diminished Self-Esteem
  • Diminished Sense of Control Over Ones Life
  • Anger and Depression
  • Also Increased the Likelihood of Partner and
    Child Abuse
  • Energy Spent Coping with These Reduces
    Likelihood of Engaging in Health-Promoting
    Activities

14
Causing Increased Chances of Challenges
  • Brooks Gunn (1997)
  • (Increased Odds of Experiencing When Poor Vs.
    Non-Poor)
  • Cognitive Outcomes
  • Learning Disabilities 1.4
  • Delayed Cognitive Development 1.3
  • Academic Achievement
  • Grade Repetition 2.0
  • Suspension or Expulsion 2.0
  • Dropping out of HS 2.2

15
  • Emotional Behavioral
  • Extended (3 mos) Em. or Beh. Problems 1.3
  • Treated for Such Problems 0.6
  • Physical Health
  • Stunted Physical Growth 2.0
  • Short-Stay Hospital Visits 2.0
  • Lead Poisoning 3.5

16
  • Other
  • Out-of-Wedlock Teen Motherhood 3.1
  • Economic Inactivity 1.9
  • Insufficient Food/Nutrition 9.9
  • Child Abuse or Neglect 6.8
  • Victim of Violent Crime 2.1

17
  • So, Poverty Represents Greater Chance of
    Accumulation of Deleterious Factors
  • Effects of Accumulated Risk Factors
  • Gabalda, Thompson, Kaslow (2010)
  • 1 Risk Factor
  • 3 Times Greater Risk for Internalizing Prob. Beh.
  • 5 Times for Externalizing
  • 2 or 3 Risk Factors
  • 12 Times Greater Risk for Internalizing
  • 19 Time for Externalizing
  • (Compared with Youth with No Risk Factors)

18
And Yet Not Everyone Is Crushed by Oppressive
Conditions Like Poverty and Oppression
19
  • Spitz and Wolf (1946) Anaclitic Depression in
    Institutionalized Infants
  • Concluded That Infants Needed More Than
    Biological Nurturing
  • But, Out of 123 Ss,
  • 19 (15) Displayed
    Severe Depression
  • 23 (19) Moderate
    Depression
  • 79 (64) Sub-Clinical
    Depression

20
  • Meyer (1957) The Developmental Importance of
    Attitudes and Approaches to Problems
  • I.e., Person-Environment Interactions
  • Later, Developed As
    the Importance of
    How One Addresses
    Turning Points in
    Ones Life

21
  • Mary Ainsworth (1962) Noted Similar Individual
    Differences, but Argued They Were Largely
    Inexplicable

22
  • Michael Rutter (e.g., 1979)
  • Individual Differences Important in Predicting
    Effects of Maternal Deprivation
  • Protective Factors Important As Well As
    Deleterious

23
  • Emmie Werner et al. (e.g., 1993, 2005) Conducted
    a Longitudinal Study on Inhabitants of Kauai

24
  • Werner et al. Found that
  • Perinatal Stress
  • Poverty
  • Family Dysfunction
  • Low Maternal Education
  • Predict Mental Health Problems in Later Life.

25
  • Nonetheless, There Was Great Variability in the
    Developmental Success of Werner et al.s Subjects
  • With Some Ss Consistently Doing Better than
    Others
  • As Toddlers, the Resilient
  • Elicited Nurturance from Adults
  • As Children
  • Succeeded Academically
  • As Adults
  • Higher Self-Esteem
  • Fewer Problems with the Law
  • Better Vocational Success

26
  • Garmezy (e.g., 1999)
  • Factors that Influence the Expression of
    Psychoses in Children of Psychotic Parents
  • Among the First Systematic Investigations into
    Resilience
  • Protective Factors Included
  • Autonomy
  • Self-Esteem
  • Positive Social Orientation
  • Family Cohesion
  • Social Support Systems
  • Etc.

27
Resilience
  • Resilience Gains Form as a Studied Construct
  • Defn. The Ability to Persist in the Face of
    Challenges and Bounce Back from Adversity
    (Masten, 2001)

28
  • Three Main Areas of Resilience
  • Recovering from Adversity or Trauma (Such as Loss
    of a Parent or Natural Disaster)
  • Overcoming Risk Factors (Such as Having a Parent
    with a Form of Psychopathology)
  • Steering Through the Everyday Stressors That Most
    Students Confront (Such as Academic Pressures or
    Social Pressures)

29
Nature of Resilience
  • Initially Viewed as a Unitary Construct
  • Hardiness (e.g., Funk and Houston, 1987)
  • Something Special Held by Few
  • Possibly Genetic

30
  • Eventually Found to Be Simply a Collection of
    Mundane Factors
  • But Still Embodied by a Minority
  • (Depending on Definition, Between 10 and 50 of
    a Sample Are Deemed Resilient)

31
  • Again, Gabalda, Thompson, Kaslow (2010)
  • Protective Factors
  • 1 Protective Factor
  • 1.5 Times Less Likely to Display Internalizing
    Problem Behaviors
  • 3.5 Times for Externalizing Prob. Beh.
  • 2 Protective Factors
  • 4 Times Less Likely to Display Internalizing
  • 6 Times for Externalizing Problems

32
  • Therefore, Just as Challenges Like Poverty Are
    the Confluence of Deleterious Factors
  • Overcoming Them Is Being Able to Draw on a Set of
    Compensatory Factors

33
  • Some Protective Factors Are Indeed Innate
  • E.g., Intelligence and Gender
  • But Others Can Be Given
  • E.g., Supportive Relationships, Positive Role
    Modeling
  • And Others Taught (at Least in Part)
  • E.g., Self-Efficacy, Interpersonal Skills

34
  • Innate Protective Factors Can Be Identified
  • Compensated for if Missing
  • Used to Improve Realistic Self-Esteem if Present

35
  • Non-Innate Protective Factors Can Be Supplied or
    Nurtured
  • These Tend to Be the Focus of Education Programs
  • E.g., Reviewed in Condly (2006)

36
  • Protective Factors Can Be Organized into Areas
    (e.g., Brackenreed, 2010)
  • Within the Individual
  • Interpersonal
  • Family
  • Peers
  • Social/Societal

37
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