chapter  6
24 Pages

Social aspects of depression

In this chapter, the ®rst section is on depression in the family context, further subdivided into sections discussing family-based causes of depression and those discussing the consequences of depression on family members. The remainder of the chapter discusses nonfamily social relations, reviewing research on ways in which depressed people function in the social world and how their actions affect othersÐand themselves. Throughout the chapter, the distinction between depression as a cause of interpersonal dif®culties and depression as a result of interpersonal problems is somewhat arbitrary. Or perhaps more precisely, the associations are bidirectional: eventually, even if some social dif®culties are the result of depression, the problems may perpetuate or create depression because they are stressful for the depressed or depression-vulnerable person. That is, vulnerability to depression may arise in the early family environment; the interpersonal consequences of depression might also contribute to further symptomatology; and de®cits in social behaviours set the stage for stressful events and circumstances that may trigger depression.