Associations among disaster exposure, intimate relationship adjustment, and PTSD symptoms: can disaster exposure enhance a relationship?

Journal Article (Journal Article)

This study examined associations among disaster characteristics, relationship adjustment, and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptomatology 9 months postdisaster in 205 women exposed to extensive flooding. Bivariately, threat/harm and loss exposure dimensions were related to each other but differentially related to relationship adjustment and PTSD symptoms. Results from structural equation modeling revealed a positive and significant direct association between threat/harm and PTSD symptoms. Conversely, loss was not significantly associated with PTSD symptoms, but was positively and significantly associated with relationship adjustment. Relationship adjustment was negatively and significantly related to PTSD symptoms. These data suggest that some aspects of disaster exposure can have a mobilizing and positive effect on intimate relationships. In turn, positive intimate relationships may buffer individuals against PTSD symptoms.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Fredman, SJ; Monson, CM; Schumm, JA; Adair, KC; Taft, CT; Resick, PA

Published Date

  • August 2010

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 23 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 446 - 451

PubMed ID

  • 20623594

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC2956072

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1573-6598

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1002/jts.20555


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States