Thought Control: Is It Ability, Strategies, or Both That Predicts Posttraumatic Symptomatology in Victims of Interpersonal Trauma?

Christine E. Valdez, Michelle M. Lilly

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Cognitive models of PTSD have implicated thought control in the development, maintenance, and recovery from PTSD. The present study extends previous research on thought control (ability and strategies) and it’s relation to posttraumatic stress symptoms (PTSS) in a sample of interpersonal trauma (IPT) survivors. Results revealed that weak thought control ability mediated the relationship between accumulated discrete IPT experiences and PTSS severity. Weak thought control ability was associated with greater use of thought control strategies, and thought control strategies of punishment and suppression added significant variance over and above the effects of accumulated IPT experiences and thought control ability in predicting PTSS severity. Furthermore, weak thought control ability was related to greater PTSS severity through the use of punishment and suppression thought control strategies. The present findings extend previous research and provide further support for theoretical assumptions of current treatment approaches for PTSD.
Original languageAmerican English
JournalJournal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment
StatePublished - Dec 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Interpersonal trauma
  • Posttraumatic stress
  • Thought control ability
  • Thought control strategies


  • Psychiatry
  • Psychiatry and Psychology
  • Psychology

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