An Investigation of Gelotophobia in Individuals with a Diagnosis of High-Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder
Samson et al. (Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders 41:475–483, 2011) conducted the first empirical investigation examining the fear of being laughed at (gelotophobia) and its prevalence in individuals with high-functioning autism spectrum disorder (hfASD). The present research examined gelotophobia in relation to social functioning, perceived social support, life satisfaction and quality of life (QoL) in individuals with hfASD, including past experiences of bullying and the presence of comorbid psychopathology. Participants were 103 adults with a clinical diagnosis of hfASD and 137 typically developing controls. Individuals with hfASD presented with higher rates of gelotophobia symptomatology in comparison to controls (87.4 vs. 22.6% respectively). It was also found that social functioning, past experiences of bullying, anxiety and life satisfaction were predictors of gelotophobia amongst individuals with hfASD.
KeywordsGelotophobia High-functioning autism spectrum disorder Fear of being laughed at Teasing Laughter
GL conceived of the study, participated in its design and coordination and drafted the manuscript. SG participated in the design and coordination of the study, performed the measurement and drafted an initial draft of the manuscript. JC participated in the design of the study and assisted with the statistical analysis. AM conceived of the study, participated in its design and coordination and helped to draft the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of interest
All the authors of this article declare that they have no conflict of interest.
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of National University of Ireland Galway and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
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