How Each Understands a Traumatic Event and the Defense Mechanism Used to Surpass It

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Examining Coping Skills and the Effects of Trauma

Those who have experienced trauma are prone to experiencing negative outcomes, such as the inclination to participate in criminal activity or negative psychological factors. Trauma is specifically important to study to better understand why negative outcomes occur and if there is a way to prevent negative outcomes. Although it is clear that negative outcomes seem to be prevalent amongst those who experience trauma, investigating one’s coping skills would be necessary to consider if this is a relevant factor when assessing outcomes from trauma. Through analyzing the existing literature, there is reason to believe that negative effects due to trauma are because of poor coping skills.

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Many who experience trauma go on in life to have negative outcomes. When assessing serious, violent, and chronic juvenile offenders, it appears that greater exposure to trauma increases the chances for one to participate in criminal behavior (Fox, Perez, Cass, Baglivio, & Epps, 2015). Along the same lines, interpersonal abuse increased chances of one developing psychopathy (Schimmenti, Passanisi, Di Carlo, & Caretti, 2015). Furthermore, according to Luthra et al. (2009), interpersonal trauma was one of the reasons for one developing posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Together, these studies suggest that trauma is linked to both negative criminal behavior and psychological outcomes.

Those who experience a higher amount of trauma or different types of trauma are impacted in various ways. For instance, a study indicated that higher frequency of interpersonal trauma increased one’s chance of developing psychopathy (Schimmenti et al., 2015). In a similar manner, a study conducted by Luthra et al. (2009) showed that interpersonal trauma was found to be the most psychologically distressing. The lifetime rates of PTSD are significantly higher when dealing with interpersonal trauma. Thus, it seems plausible that interpersonal trauma can cause significant alterations to one’s mental health. Furthermore, those who commit chronic, violent crimes have experienced more trauma than those who were once and done offenders (Fox et al., 2015). Although these outcomes are typically viewed as direct results from the trauma, experiencing trauma is difficult and some may not have the best coping methods to handle this.

Recent research has suggested that those who endure trauma go on to experience negative outcomes. After one experiences trauma, their coping skills may be damaged. Consequently, investigating the coping skills of an individual is important because coping skills are essential when it comes to dealing with trauma. Therefore, the current study will investigate the coping skills of those who have experienced trauma and those who have not experienced trauma. The independent variable is the exposure to trauma and the dependent variable are the coping skills. I hypothesize that children who are exposed to trauma will have poorer coping skills than children who do not experience trauma.

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