Personal Narrative Mediates the Impact of Social Deficits in Schizophrenia

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“Although negative symptoms are a barrier to recovery,” says a study in The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, “little is understood about the psychological processes that reinforce and sustain them.” The study finds that among 99 adults with schizophrenia spectrum diagnoses, the significant impact of social withdrawal and emotion recognition deficits on negative symptoms in people became nonsignificant when compared with personal narrative integrity as a mediating factor.

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Kermit Cole
Kermit Cole, MFT, founding editor of Mad in America, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico as a couples and family therapist. Inspired by Open Dialogue, he works as part of a team and consults with couples and families that have members identified as patients. His work in residential treatment — largely with severely traumatized and/or "psychotic" clients — led to an appreciation of the power and beauty of systemic philosophy and practice, as the alternative to the prevailing focus on individual pathology. A former film-maker, he has undergraduate and master's degrees in psychology from Harvard University, as well as an MFT degree from the Council for Relationships in Philadelphia. He is a doctoral candidate with the Taos Institute and the Free University of Brussels. You can reach him at [email protected]