Clinical Perspectives on Autobiographical Memory location:Aarhus, Denmark date:11-12 June 2012
Traumatized and depressed patients have difficulties retrieving specific autobiographical memories (overgeneral memory, OGM), and they more frequently use an observer perspective (as set against a field perspective) during memory retrieval. We studied these phenomena in relation to borderline symptoms and effortful control (EC). 148 (66 males) volunteers completed the Autobiographical Memory Test, the EC Scale of the Adult Temperament Questionnaire, and the Borderline Syndrome Index. When controlled for depression, OGM was not associated with EC levels, nor with borderline symptoms, but higher EC scores reflected less borderline complaints. Furthermore, interpersonal borderline symptoms were positively associated with the proportion of observer memories, and this relationship was found to be mediated by the EC scale activation control, suggesting that borderline patients would benefit from (experiential) exposure.