New research finds that people with physical abuse are more likely to report positive emotions, such as positive emotions such as joy, gratitude, happiness and peace, and also to experience more positive emotional states, such and happiness, than people without physical abuse.
According to the study, conducted by researchers at Columbia University, researchers found that people who experienced physical abuse during childhood were more likely than those who experienced no abuse to report higher levels of positive emotions including positive emotions like joy, and more positive feelings such as happiness, positive feelings of peace, positive emotions of joy and positive feelings like gratitude.
Researchers also found that these same people were more apt to report being able to tolerate and tolerate negative emotions such fear, sadness, anger and fear, and to feel the need to express positive emotions in a positive way.
For instance, the researchers found people who were physically abused during childhood showed higher levels in the positive emotions category than people who had no physical abuse experience.
The findings, published in the journal Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, also showed that people in the physical abuse category were more inclined to report feeling helpless and being unable to help others, as well as feeling emotionally insecure and having less empathy than people in other categories.
However, these people were also more likely, when asked to describe their relationship with their abuser, to say they were angry, hurt, depressed, anxious, and in denial.
People who reported having experienced physical trauma during childhood had more negative emotional states compared to people who did not experience physical abuse, the study said.
For example, people who reported experiencing physical abuse were more prone to experiencing feelings of hopelessness and depression, and less inclined to experience positive emotions.
This study provides a useful framework for addressing the challenge of preventing childhood physical abuse from occurring, said Daniel J. Zimbalist, a professor of psychology at Columbia who was not involved in the study.
However it’s important to recognize that we need to also address other factors that may contribute to feelings of victimization and to feelings that we can’t control, said Zimball, who is also a professor at the University of North Carolina.
People with physical trauma in childhood may experience emotional distress that makes it difficult to feel safe and comfortable, which can contribute to higher levels, he said.
People should also consider the possibility that physical abuse might cause psychological harm to their relationships, he added.
“For instance in the case of a parent who’s emotionally abusive, it’s possible that the child might be in a position where he’s isolated from the other people who love and care for him,” he said, noting that emotional distress in childhood is one of the primary risk factors for child abuse.
“So that’s a risk factor that needs to be addressed, whether that’s physical abuse or not,” Zimballs said.
Researchers found that those who had experienced physical assault or abuse experienced greater levels of negative emotions including depression, anxiety, and anger than people whose families did not have physical abuse experiences.
The study was funded by the National Institute of Mental Health and the National Institutes of Health.