Borderline personality disorder traits, social rejection, and risky behavior

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Alex Birthrong (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Rosemery Nelson-Gray

Abstract: The current study examined the moderating effect of social rejection on the association between borderline personality disorder (BPD) traits, assessed dimensionally, and risk-taking behavior. Undergraduate participants (n = 195) were randomly assigned to a social rejection or academic failure task in which they were asked to write about a time when they felt intensely socially rejected, or a time they experienced an academic failure, respectively. Participants then reported whether they engaged in risk-taking behavior (e.g., alcohol use, drug use, risky sexual behavior) immediately after or within a few days after the event they wrote about. In addition, behavioral risk-taking was indexed by performance on computerized analogue risk-taking tasks—the Balloon Analogue Risk Task (BART), and the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT). A main effect of BPD traits was found for alcohol use, risky sexual behavior, drug use, other risk-taking behavior (e.g., reckless driving, self-injury), total risk-taking behavior (a composite sum of all self-reported risk-taking behavior scales), BART performance, and emotional reactions to the relived event. An interaction between rejection condition and level of BPD traits was found to predict alcohol use, risky sexual behavior, total self-reported risk-taking behavior, and the importance of the relived event. All IGT results were nonsignificant. Lastly, and contrary to expectation, a significant interaction between BPD traits and rejection in predicting Profile of Mood States Total Mood Disturbance was not found.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2016
Borderline personality disorder, Risk-taking, Risky, Social rejection
Borderline personality disorder
Rejection (Psychology)
Risk-taking (Psychology)

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