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Access Type

WSU Access

Date of Award

January 2016

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A.

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Annmarie Cano

Abstract

I FEEL YOUR PAIN: THE INFLUENCE OF PAIN CATASTROPHIZING AND PERCEIVED THREAT ON PAIN SEVERITY CONGRUENCE IN COUPLES by

SHANNON CLARK August 2016

Advisor: Dr. Annmarie Cano Major: Psychology

Degree: Master of Arts

The present study examines the extent to which partners were congruent on multiple ratings of participants’ pain severity during a cold pressor task and how pain catastrophizing and perceived threat may moderate participant-partner congruence over time. Undergraduate couples in a romantic relationship (N = 106 dyads) participated in the study. Both partners rated the participant’s pain in writing several times over the course of the task; thus, multilevel modeling was used to analyze the data. Current evidence suggests that congruence in acute pain ratings changes over time but that observers rate participants’ pain as less intense, on average, than participants’ own ratings. The current study also adds to the literature by showing that state and trait pain anxiety may independently and jointly influence the degree to which two romantic partners similarly rate one partner’s pain.

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