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The Psychological Correlates of Dependency in the Jamaican Population

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Objective: To establish the prevalence of psychological dependency in the Jamaican society in order to examine the relationship between the psychological correlates of dependency and socio-political dependency in this post-colonial country.

Methods: A total of 1506 adult individuals were sampled from 2150 households using a stratified sampling method and assessed using the 17 questions of the Jamaica Personality Disorder Inventory (JPDI) on the phenomenology of dependency that are grouped into the psychological features of physiological dependency, financial dependency, and psychological dependency. The database of responses to the demographic and JPDI questionnaires was created and analysed using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) version 17.

Results: Of the national population sampled, 77.1% denied having any of these phenomenological symptoms of dependence while 22.63% of the population admitted to having some phenomenology of dependency, ranging from mild (5.6%), to moderate (12.1), or severe (4.9%). Substance use (physiological dependency) responders accounted for 21.23%, financial dependency responders for 43.45%, and psychological dependency responders for 15.96%. Significant gender and socio-economic class patterns of dependency were revealed. This substantial swathe of the Jamaican population acknowledged their own dependency and behavioural withdrawal response to physical or emotional loss in their life, and reported having dependency problems in managing their financial and monetary affairs.

Conclusions: Three-quarters of the Jamaican responders of this survey ostensibly are free of the phenomenology of dependency while a more vulnerable one-quarter has insight that they are still locked in a struggle for psychological independence. The political and economic relations between psychological dependency and socio-political dependency are discussed.

22 Apr, 2013
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e-Published: 26 Aug, 2013
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