The affects towards and perceptions of the self and significant others in hemophiliacs and diabetics

University dissertation from Claudia Lament, 136 Prospect Park West 6A, Brooklyn, 11215 N.Y. USA

Abstract: The Affects Towards And Perceptions Of The Self And Significant Others in Hemophiliacs and Diabetics The studies in this dissertation investigated the feelings towards and ways of perceiving the self and significant others in twenty-seven patients with hemophilia between the ages of 16-39 to discern how their perceptual-affect states are organized. Secondly, the relationship between bleeds and affect states was also examined. In order to ascertain whether the hemophiliac group's perceptual-affect states were specific to them, the same instrument that was given to the hemophiliacs was administered to a group of insulin-dependent diabetic male patients. The correlations between diabetic control, as measured by the subjects' HbA1c levels and the ways of feeling toward and perceiving the self and significant others is also presented. This three part dissertatin opened with a report on a four year psychoanalytic treatment of a young boy with hemophilia. The central concerns which arose from the psychoanalytic material showed striking congruence with the results from the quantitative study which followed, particularly with respect to the perceptual-affect states that emerged. Namely, issues to do with that which was deemed threatening, with perceptions of others who appeared to be damaged and lastly, the desire to take control over others and events both emanating from within and outside the self were of primary importance in both studies. By way of the repertory grid, the empirical study which comprised the second portion of the dissertation delineated those perceptual-affect states which underpin the hemophiliac's view of significant others and the self. The perceptual-affect states were also correlated with the subjects' frequency of bleeds over a one year period. The findings partially supported the hypothesized relationship documented in the literature which states that the appearance of organized perceptions and affects in these patients towards significant others is related to a higher frequency of bleeds than in those patients who do not present with these affects and perceptions. The comparison group of twenty-seven male subjects with insulin-depedent diabetes mellitus between the ages of 16 to 39 that was given the same instrument as the hemophiliacs comprised the third portion of the dissertation. The results showed the emergence of the same factor structure as the hemophiliac group. The role of externalization of unacceptable aspects of the self onto significant others was also highlighted in both groups. This paves the way for difficulties in mentalization of psychic conflict and its enactment by way of the body or onto others.

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