Skip to main content

Toward an Integration of Subjective Well-Being and Psychopathology

Abstract

The validity and utility of a dual-factor system (DFS) of mentalhealth was explored. Factors were the traditional perspective onmental health, psychopathology (PTH), and the more recentperspective, subjective well-being (SWB). Research has shown thatPTH and SWB are not simply opposite poles of a single continuum,however, the constructs have yet to be integrated.The sample consisted of 407 children in Grades 3–6. Subjects wereclassified as high or low on each construct, offering fourresearch groups, two challenging the unidimensional perspective.Group membership was the classification variable in a series ofdiscriminant function analyses. Predictors assessed the domainsof temperament, personality, self-concept, locus of control, andinterpersonal relations.Results offered strong initial evidence for the validity andpotential utility of a DFS. Results are discussed, as areimplications for mental illness prevention/intervention.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

REFERENCES

  1. Bouchard Jr., T. J.: 1995, ‘Longitudinal studies of personality and intelligence: A behavior genetic and evolutionary psychology perspective’ in D. H. Saklofske and M. Zeidner (eds.), International Handbook of Personality and Intelligence (Plenum, New York), pp. 81–106.

    Google Scholar 

  2. Bracken, B. A.: 1993, Assessment of Interpersonal Relations (PRO-ED, Austin, TX).

    Google Scholar 

  3. Brebner, J.: 1998, ‘Happiness and personality’ Personality and Individual Differences 25, pp. 279–296.

    Google Scholar 

  4. Buss, A.: 1989, ‘Temperaments as personality traits’ in G. A. Kohnstamm, J. E. Bates and M. K. Rothbart (eds.), Temperament in Childhood (Wiley, Chisester), pp. 49–58.

    Google Scholar 

  5. Buss, A. H. and R. Plomin: 1975, A Temperament Theory of Personality Development (Wiley, New York).

    Google Scholar 

  6. Buss, A. H. and R. Plomin: 1984, Temperament: Early Developing Personality Traits (Erlbaum, Hillsdale, NJ).

    Google Scholar 

  7. Carton, J. S. and S. Nowicki Jr.: 1996, ‘Origins of generalized control expectancies: Reported child stress and observed maternal control and warmth’ Journal of Social Psychology 136, pp. 753–760.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  8. Champoux, M., G. DiGregorio, M. L. Schneider and S. J. Suomi: 1990, ‘Inanimate environmental enrichment for group-housed rhesus macaque infants’ American Journal of Primatology 22, pp. 61–67.

    Google Scholar 

  9. Costa, P. T. Jr. and R. R. McCrae: 1980, ‘Influence of extraversion and neuroticism on subjective well-being: Happy and unhappy people’ Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 38, pp. 668–678.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  10. Costa, P. T. Jr. and R. R. McCrae: 1994, ‘Set like plaster? Evidence for the stability of adult personality’ in T. F. Heatherton and J. L. Weinberger (eds.), Can Personality Change? (APA, Washington, DC), pp. 21–40.

    Google Scholar 

  11. Cowen, E. L.: 1991, ‘In pursuit of wellness’ American Psychologist 46, pp. 404–408.

    Google Scholar 

  12. Diener, E.: 1984, ‘Subjective well-being’ Psychological Bulletin 95, pp. 542–575.

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  13. Diener, E.: 2000, ‘Subjective well-being: The science of happiness and a proposal for a national index’ American Psychologist 55, pp. 34–43.

    Google Scholar 

  14. Eysenck, H. J. and S. B. Eysenck: 1975, Eysenck Personality Questionnaire (Educational and Industrial Testing Service, San Diego, CA).

    Google Scholar 

  15. Feiring, C. and M. Lewis: 1989, ‘The social networks of girls and boys from early through middle childhood’ in D. Belle (ed.), Children's Social Networks and Social Supports (Wiley, New York, NY), pp. 119–150.

    Google Scholar 

  16. Fernandes, M. and D. Fontana: 1996, ‘Changes in control beliefs in Portuguese primary school pupils as a consequence of the employment of self-assessment strategies’ British Journal of Educational Psychology 66, pp. 301–313.

    Google Scholar 

  17. Francis, L. J.: 1996, ‘The development of an abbreviated form of the revised junior Eysenck personality questionnaire (JEPQR-A) among 13–15 year olds’ Personality and Individual Differences 21, pp. 835–844.

    Google Scholar 

  18. Francis, L. J.: 1999, ‘Happiness is a thing called stable extraversion: A further examination of the relationship between the Oxford Happiness Inventory and Eysenck's dimensional model of personality and gender’ Personality and Individual Differences 26, pp. 5–12.

    Google Scholar 

  19. Gaub, M. and C. L. Carlson: 1997, ‘Behavioral characteristics of DSM-IV ADHD subtypes in a school-based population’ Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology 25, pp. 103–111.

    Google Scholar 

  20. Gould, M. S., H. Bird and B. S. Jaramillo: 1993, ‘Correspondence between statistically derived behavior syndromes and child psychiatric diagnoses in a community sample’ Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology 21, pp. 287–313.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  21. Greenspoon, P. J. and D. H. Saklofske: 1997, ‘Validity and reliability of the multidimensional students' life satisfaction scale with Canadian children’ Journal of Psychoeducational Assessment 15, pp. 138–155.

    Google Scholar 

  22. Greenspoon, P. J. and D. H. Saklofske: 1998, ‘Confirmatory factor analysis of the multidimensional students' life satisfaction scale’ Personality and Individual Differences 25, pp. 965–972.

    Google Scholar 

  23. Harter, S.: 1985, The Self-Perception Profile for Children (University of Denver, Denver, CO).

    Google Scholar 

  24. Huebner, E. S.: 1994, ‘Preliminary development and validation of a multidimensional life satisfaction scale for children’ Psychological Assessment 6, pp. 149–158.

    Google Scholar 

  25. Jahoda, M.: 1958, Current Concepts of Positive Mental Health (Basic Books, New York, NY).

    Google Scholar 

  26. Kiesler, C. A., C. Simpkins and T. Morton: 1989, ‘The psychiatric inpatient treatment of children and youth in general hospitals’ American Journal of Community Psychology 17, pp. 821–830.

    Google Scholar 

  27. Lewinsohn, P., J. Redner and J. Seeley: 1991, ‘The relationship between life satisfaction and psychosocial variables: New perspectives’ in F. Strack, M. Argyle and N. Schwartz (eds.), SubjectiveWell-Being (Plenum Press, New York, NY), pp. 141–169.

    Google Scholar 

  28. Masten, A. S. and J. D. Coatsworth: 1998, ‘The development of competence in favorable and unfavorable environments: Lessons from research on successful children’ American Psychologist 53, pp. 205–220.

    Google Scholar 

  29. McCallum, S. and B. A. Bracken: 1993, ‘Interpersonal relations between school children and their peers, parents, and teachers’ Educational Psychology Review 5, pp. 155–176.

    Google Scholar 

  30. Mischel, W. and Y. Shoda: 1995, ‘A cognitive-affective system theory of personality: Reconceptualizing situations, dispositions, dynamics, and invariance in personality structure’ Psychological Review 102, pp. 246–268.

    Google Scholar 

  31. Pavot, W., F. Fujita and E. Diener: 1997, ‘The relation between self-aspect congruence, personality and subjective well-being’ Personality and Individual Differences 22, pp. 183–191.

    Google Scholar 

  32. Prior, M., G. Crook, A. Stripp, M. Power and M. Joseph: 1986, ‘The relationship between temperament and personality: An exploratory study’ Personality and Individual Differences 7, pp. 875–881.

    Google Scholar 

  33. Reynolds, C. R. and R. W. Kamphaus: 1992, Behavior Assessment System for Children (American Guidance Service, Circle Pines, MN).

    Google Scholar 

  34. Rutter, M.: 1987, ‘Temperament, personality and personality disorder’ British Journal of Psychiatry 150, pp. 443–458.

    Google Scholar 

  35. Schlosser, B.: 1990, ‘The assessment of subjective well-being and its relationship to the stress process’ Journal of Personality Assessment 54, pp. 128–140.

    Google Scholar 

  36. Schneider, M. L., C. F. Moore, S. J. Suomi and M. Champoux: 1991, ‘Laboratory assessment of temperament and environmental enrichment in rhesus monkey infants (Macaca mulatta)’ American Journal of Primatology 25, pp. 137–155.

    Google Scholar 

  37. Seeman, J.: 1989, ‘Toward a model of positive health’ American Psychologist 44, pp. 1099–1109.

    Google Scholar 

  38. Segal, Z. V. and S. R. Swallow: 1993, ‘Schematic self-representation in emotional disorder: Conceptual and methodological considerations’ Australian Psychologist 28, pp. 145–150.

    Google Scholar 

  39. Weiss, B. and T. Catron: 1994, ‘The specificity of comorbidity of externalizing problems and internalizing problems in children’ Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology 22, pp. 389–401.

    Google Scholar 

  40. World Health Organization: 1964, Basic Documents, 15th edn.

Download references

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Greenspoon, P.J., Saklofske, D.H. Toward an Integration of Subjective Well-Being and Psychopathology. Social Indicators Research 54, 81–108 (2001). https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1007219227883

Download citation

Keywords

  • Classification Variable
  • Mental Illness
  • Function Analysis
  • Opposite Polis
  • Initial Evidence