Fear in Infants Predicts Guilt in Toddlers, Later Psychopathology


Researchers at Cardiff University in Wales find that fear in infants is a predictor of guilt in later life, and write in Development and Psychopathology about the implications of this for developmental psychopathology.

Abstract → 


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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].


  1. My husband, usually a jolly and cheerful man most of the time,used to get explosive rages when our children were small. These rages were short, sharp and unpredictable and usually had something to do with his work. These explosions of anger didn’t last long but they left all of our children traumatised in some way. They are grown up now but I can see how they have left a mark on them. Our oldest son is permanently suffering from guilt and insecurity, our daughter blanks out if somone speaks loudly and unexpectedly to her and our younger son suffers from anxiety and finds it difficult to get close to people. I am sure it is due to their father’s erratic behaviour when they were small.

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