Core Beliefs Challenge and Posttraumatic Growth: Mediating Role of Rumination Among Internally Displaced Survivors of Terror Attacks

Abstract

Core beliefs challenge is consistently associated with posttraumatic growth (PTG) in the literature; but its mediating mechanisms have been scantly examined. This study, adopting a cross-sectional design, investigated whether the associations of core beliefs challenge with multidimensional PTG were mediated by deliberate and intrusive rumination. Tiv language versions of the core beliefs inventory, rumination scale, and posttraumatic growth inventory were completed by 859 adolescent and adult internally displaced persons in north-central Nigeria. Results indicated that core beliefs challenge was directly positively associated with relationship with others but not the other PTG dimensions. PTG was associated with younger age, except in the dimension of appreciation of life. Intrusive rumination mediated the associations of core beliefs challenge with appreciation of life, personal strength, and relationship with others, but not new possibilities and spiritual growth. Deliberate rumination mediated the association of core beliefs challenge with new possibilities, personal strength, spiritual growth, and relationship with others, but not appreciation of life. Evidence for the full PTG model upholding that appraised violations of core beliefs triggers intrusive rumination which makes way for deliberate rumination, and in turn leads to experience of PTG, was found only for new possibilities, spiritual growth, and relationship with others; but not for appreciation of life and personal strength. Hence, the postulations of PTG model may not equally apply to the multiple dimensions of PTG.

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Acknowledgements

The authors are grateful to Rev Fr John Asen, Tever Ubullaun, Joseph I. Ubullaun, the research assistants who helped us in the data collection, and the internally displaced persons who volunteered to take part in this study. A version of this manuscript was presented at the First African Positive Psychology Conference in North-western University, Potchefstroom, 4–6 April, 2018. Special thanks to all the participants at the plenary session who made useful comments on the paper.

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Eze, J.E., Ifeagwazi, C.M. & Chukwuorji, J.C. Core Beliefs Challenge and Posttraumatic Growth: Mediating Role of Rumination Among Internally Displaced Survivors of Terror Attacks. J Happiness Stud 21, 659–676 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10902-019-00105-x

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Keywords

  • Core beliefs
  • Internal displacement
  • Posttraumatic growth
  • Rumination
  • Terror attack