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date: 23 April 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter defines stress generation, noting evidence of the bidirectional effects of stress and depression on each other, contributing to recurrence and chronicity of depression and continuing stressors. Studies have documented elevated levels of acute negative life events as well as enduring stressful life circumstances, especially stressful interpersonal situations. Besides depression, predictors of stress generation include maladaptive cognitions and individual traits and experiences that lead to dysfunctional emotional and behavioral reactions, as well as dysfunctional coping styles and resources. Although stress generation may occur in many forms of psychopathology, there appears to be a unique link between major depression and the occurrence of interpersonal dependent stressors. Patterns of vulnerability–stress–depression relationships support an emphasis on the importance of interpersonal and interactional themes in many forms of depression, perhaps especially for women. Stress generation perspectives highlight environmental contributors to and consequences of depression. Goals for future research and clinical implications/applications are noted.

Keywords: stress generation, recurrent depression, interpersonal stressors, interpersonal dysfunction, stress predictors

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