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Mental health stigma can be detrimental not only for the recipient, but also for the stigmatizer. As mental health stigma is often conceptualized as a multidimensional construct, Study 1 first examined the factor structure of mental health stigma as assessed by the Stigmatizing Attitude-Believability (SAB; Masuda et al., 2009). Study 2 investigated differential relations between the factor-analytically derived components of mental health stigma and psychological distress and psychological flexibility. Results of Study 1 revealed that mental health stigma consisted of two related, yet separable components: Exclusion and Course/Origin. The Exclusion component was characterized by negative emotions and cognition associated with an increased desire for social distance. Course/Origin was marked by pessimistic views toward treatment prognosis and recovery. Results of Study 2 suggested that these two components have differential associations with psychological distress and flexibility. The Course/Origin component of stigma, but not Exclusion, was associated with psychological distress of the stigmatizer. Furthermore, this association was fully mediated by lower levels of psychological flexibility. These findings suggest the importance of conceptualizing mental health stigma multidimensionally.


“NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Personality and Individual Differences. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Masuda, A., & Latzman, R. D. (2011). Examining the associations among factor-analytically derived components of mental health stigma, distress, and psychological flexibility. Personality and Individual Differences, 51, 435-438

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