The stories listed below were the seven most popular PsyPost articles in September of 2021. Click the headline to read the full story.
1. Shame helps explain the link between vulnerable narcissism and insecure attachment among young adults
A new study published in BMC Psychiatry pinpoints the role of shame in contributing to the negative outcomes associated with narcissism in young adults. The researchers found that youth who were higher in vulnerable narcissism demonstrated greater shame, and in turn, higher scores in preoccupied and fearful attachment. Although narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) has attracted much attention from scientists and laypeople alike, research concerning effective treatment for the disorder remains scarce. The personality trait of narcissism is defined by an inflated self-image, a lack of empathy for others, and an exceptional need for attention.
Cannabis use may be associated with subtle long-lasting changes in speech, according to new exploratory research published in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence. Cannabis appears to have long-lasting effects on motor function, including alterations in the way that people walk. Because speech is a complex motor skill involving the control of several muscles, researchers affiliated with The Neurophysiology of Human Movement Group set out to examine whether cannabis use was associated with alterations in speech timing, vocal control, and quality.
3. People with higher attachment anxiety are more likely to have been ghosted by a partner, study finds
A new study provides evidence that relationship attachment styles and destiny beliefs both play a role in the dating phenomenon known as “ghosting” — or ending a romantic relationship by unexpectedly cutting off all contact. The findings appear in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships.
A study published in the Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy sheds light on how a person’s motivations for cheating affect the outcome of the affair. They found that people who said they cheated out of a lack of love or anger toward their partners tended to engage in affairs that were longer and more likely to result in the end of their primary relationship. Those who cheated due to situational factors such as stress or intoxication engaged in affairs that were shorter and less sexually satisfying.
5. People with insecure attachment are more likely to form illusory, parasocial relationships with TV characters
According to findings from the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, the way we engage with fictional characters is in part a reflection of our attachment styles. The study revealed that people who are high in anxious or avoidant attachment are more likely to form illusory reciprocal relationships with their favorite TV characters, suggesting that bonding with story characters can help relieve attachment insecurity.
6. A single dose of ayahuasca improves self-perception of speech performance in socially anxious people, study finds
The psychedelic brew known as ayahuasca could help improve the self-perception of those with social anxiety disorder, according to a controlled proof-of-concept study recently published in the Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology. Ayahuasca, a concoction used for centuries by indigenous Amazon tribes, contains the powerful psychedelic drug dimethyltryptamine (DMT) and monoamine oxidase inhibitors. Preliminary research has offered some evidence that ayahuasca provides psychological benefits for individuals suffering from anxiety and depression.
New research sheds light on the structure of Dark Triad traits — a cluster of intertwined personality characteristics comprised of narcissism, psychopathy, and Machiavellianism. The findings, which appear in Personality and Individual Differences, suggest that these personality traits contain several subdimensions that might have differing relationships with various psychosocial outcomes.