Autonomy-connectedness and internalizing-externalizing personality psychopathology, among outpatients

Nathan Bachrach*, Marrie H.J. Bekker, Marcel A. Croon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Objectives: The aims of this research were to investigate gender differences in levels of autonomy-connectedness, Axis I Psychopathology, and higher order factors of internalizing and externalizing personality psychopathology and, second, to investigate the association between these variables. Design: The design of this research is cross-sectional and multicentered. Methods: We used self-report questionnaires, factor analysis, and regression analysis. Results: We found evidence for a significant role of autonomy-connectedness in Axis I Psychopathology. This was especially true for women, who were found to be more sensitive to others and sensitivity to others was strongly associated with Axis I Psychopathology. Maybe due to the research sample no evidence was found for an association of autonomy-connectedness with externalizing psychopathology. As to the role of autonomy-connectedness in internalizing psychopathology, we found that a lack of self-awareness or a capacity of managing new situations, combined with a high sensitivity to others, were associated with internalizing psychopathology. Women appeared to be more sensitive to others and to report higher levels of Axis I Psychopathology than men. Conclusion: We conclude that autonomy-connectedness plays an important role in Axis I Psychopathology as well as in internalizing Axis II pathology. Treatment of Axis I and internalizing Axis II psychopathology should therefore also focus on autonomy problems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)718-726
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Clinical Psychology
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Autonomy-connectedness
  • Axis I Psychopathology
  • DSM-IV Axis II
  • Gender
  • Internalizing-externalizing
  • Personality disorders
  • Psychopathology


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