Relationship between childhood trauma and resilience in patients with mood disorders

Ji Yoon Park, Chan Woo Lee, Yoonjeong Jang, Wonyun Lee, Hyeona Yu, Joohyun Yoon, Sunghee Oh, Yun Seong Park, Hyun A. Ryoo, Jangwon Lee, Nayoung Cho, Chong Hun Lee, Yeong Chan Lee, Hong Hee Won, Hyo Shin Kang, Tae Hyon Ha, Woojae Myung

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Childhood trauma has lasting negative impacts on individuals' psychological functioning. However, there is limited empirical evidence on the association between childhood trauma and resilience and none examining such relationship among diverse clinical populations. This study aimed to investigate the relationship in patients with major depressive disorder, bipolar I disorder, bipolar II disorder, and a comparison group. Methods: In total, 787 psychiatric patients and 734 people from the general population participated in the study. The Childhood Trauma Questionnaire-Short Form and Connor-Davidson Resilience Scale were used to assess childhood trauma and resilience, respectively. Results: Individuals with childhood trauma showed lower levels of resilience in all subjects; among them, those who experienced emotional abuse and emotional neglect exhibited even stronger associations than other types of childhood trauma. There was a significant difference in the negative relationship between childhood trauma and resilience by group, where the association was more prominent in the comparison group than in MDD and BD II patient groups. Limitations: The generalizability of our results may be limited due to unproportionate patient sample size. Also, we could not examine the causal relationship between childhood trauma and resilience. Conclusion: Childhood trauma and resilience had a significantly negative association. Our results suggest that people who have experienced emotional abuse and emotional neglect should be closely assisted to develop resilience. Interventions that promote resilience should be provided to individuals predisposed to psychological risks as a result of childhood trauma.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)162-170
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Affective Disorders
StatePublished - 15 Feb 2023


  • Bipolar disorder
  • Childhood trauma
  • Major depressive disorder
  • Resilience


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