How BIS/BAS and psycho-behavioral variables distinguish between social withdrawal subtypes during emerging adulthood

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Personality and Individual Differences, ISSN: 0191-8869, Vol: 119, Page: 283-288

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Julie C. Bowker; Miriam T. Stotsky; Rebecca G. Etkin
Elsevier BV
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article description
Informed by past theory and research on social withdrawal, the aims of this study were to investigate whether three subtypes of social withdrawal (shyness, avoidance, unsociability) are related with BIS and BAS, as hypothesized by leading theories. Also of interest was whether these three withdrawal subtypes are related uniquely to different theoretically-indicated outcomes during emerging adulthood, a developmental period that has received very little empirical attention in this area of research. Participants were 295 ( M age = 19.31 years) emerging adults who completed self-report measures assessing different motivations for social withdrawal, aggression, anxiety sensitivity, creativity, social anhedonia, and BIS/BAS. Structural equation modeling revealed findings that challenge theoretical models that assume that specific and varying combinations of BIS and BAS underlie different withdrawal subtypes. The models also revealed new evidence of specific and non-specific associations, including the first evidence of a potential benefit (creativity) associated with unsociability.