Empaty ability and the quality of interpersonal relations in youth

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Abstract

We present the results of the study of the relationship between empathy and the quality of interpersonal relations in adolescents and students. Interpersonal relations are operationalized through attachment styles — secure, anxious—preoccupied and avoiding. We review studies of the impact of attachment on empathy development. The present study involved 169 people, including school, college, and university students. We used the Interpersonal Reactivity Index by M. Davis and forced-choice attachment paragraphs by C. Hazan and F. Shaver. Students with secure attachment have the lowest level of personal distress. Empathic concern and the perspective taking indicators are higher in the ambivalent attachment group in comparison with the avoidantly attached students. It is concluded that avoidance of intimacy with other people is accompanied by less pronounced empathy than striving for intimacy and a simultaneous fear of rejection.

General Information

Keywords: empathy, empathic concern, interpersonal relations, perspective taking, personal distress, adolescents, youth, attachment

Journal rubric: Empirical Researches

Article type: scientific article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.17759/cpp.2017250405

For citation: Klimenkova E.N. Empaty ability and the quality of interpersonal relations in youth. Konsul'tativnaya psikhologiya i psikhoterapiya = Counseling Psychology and Psychotherapy, 2017. Vol. 25, no. 4, pp. 59–70. DOI: 10.17759/cpp.2017250405. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)

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Information About the Authors

Elizaveta N. Klimenkova, PhD in Psychology, Senior Lecturer, Department of Clinical and Counseling Psychology, Moscow State University of Psychology & Education, State professional educational establishment Complex «South-West»,Psychologist, school psychologist, the structural subdivision "Sevastopol", Moscow, Russia, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0009-0008-5188-1828, e-mail: klimenkovaliza@gmail.com

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