Why are sex differences in internalizing mental health disorders such as depression and externalizing health behaviors such as alcohol problems frequently documented? Despite these reported differences between men and women, what accounts for the wide variation in these health outcomes within sex? Theories of gender role orientation have provided explanations for these gaps, but empirical support is mixed. In this dissertation, I propose an alternative model where the sex-linked personality traits from the BIS/BAS systems inform sex differences and intra-sex variation in two contrasting health outcomes: depressive symptoms and alcohol use problems. I analyze the potential mediating and moderating effects of the BIS/BAS on the relationships between stress and health outcomes in a sample of 1,713 young adults in Miami-Dade County, Florida. Elevated BIS traits among women account for 20 percent of the sex gap in depressive symptoms and exacerbate the effects some social stressors on depressive symptoms. BIS/BAS do not inform sex differences in alcohol use problems, however elements of the BAS traits strongly predict the alcohol behaviors of both sexes, while BIS traits moderate the stress-alcohol relationship among women in contrasting ways. Additionally, the BIS/BAS traits do not operate consistently when considered within race/ethnicity. The results provide a window into the role that individual variation in personalities can contribute to the understanding of important intra-sex and inter-sex variation in the stress process.
|Commitee:||Coutts, Christopher J., McFarland, Michael J., Waggoner, Miranda R.|
|School:||The Florida State University|
|School Location:||United States -- Florida|
|Source:||DAI-A 81/1(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Keywords:||Alcohol use/abuse, BIS/BAS, Depressive symptoms, Stress|
Copyright in each Dissertation and Thesis is retained by the author. All Rights Reserved
The supplemental file or files you are about to download were provided to ProQuest by the author as part of a
dissertation or thesis. The supplemental files are provided "AS IS" without warranty. ProQuest is not responsible for the
content, format or impact on the supplemental file(s) on our system. in some cases, the file type may be unknown or
may be a .exe file. We recommend caution as you open such files.
Copyright of the original materials contained in the supplemental file is retained by the author and your access to the
supplemental files is subject to the ProQuest Terms and Conditions of use.
Depending on the size of the file(s) you are downloading, the system may take some time to download them. Please be