Dissociation : Vol. 8, No. 4, p. 220-228 :The imaginary companion phenomenon: an analysis of personality correlates and developmental antecedents

Show full item record

Title: Dissociation : Vol. 8, No. 4, p. 220-228 :The imaginary companion phenomenon: an analysis of personality correlates and developmental antecedents
Author: Dierker, Lisa C.; Davis, Kristie F.; Sanders, Barbara
Abstract: In the present studies, both the incidence of recall of an imaginary companion and the remembered vividness of the experience were assessed in college students. The purpose of the research was to ascertain the extent to which individuals in a non clinical population who recall having a childhood imaginary companion share characteristics and negative life experiences with individuals diagnosed with Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) ; in this clinical group childhood imaginary companions are reported fairly frequently, and the experience is described as extremely vivid (Sanders, 1992). Two studies were carried out, In Study 1, students of both sexes who remembered an imaginary companion (IC+) were found to be more dissociative than those who reported not having a companion (IC I). The IC+ women also scored higher on an imaginative Involvement Inventory than IC- women. This difference did not reach statistical significance among the male students. Study 2 screened a new population of female students in order to compare three groups of women: A High Vividness group (PM, a Low Vividness group (LV), and a no-companion group (IC-). The HV group was comprised of IC+ women who said they had been able to see and hear their childhood imaginary companion, and who remembered believing the companion was real; the LV group consisted of IC+ women who answered "no " to these 3 vividness questions, and the IC- group was defined as in Study 1. The HV women were found to be significantly higher in imaginative involvement than the LV group, and also more dissociative. The LV group did not differ significantly from the IC - group. In both studies, students who reported remembering an imaginary companion, even those whose experience was perceptually vivid, did not report significantly more lonely, stressful or traumatic childhoods than comparison groups.
Description: p. 220-228
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1794/1150
Date: 1995-12


Files in this item

Files Size Format View
Diss_8_4_4_OCR_rev.pdf 2.968Mb PDF View/Open

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show full item record