Are reported differences in life events for anxious children and controls due to comorbid disorders?

Jennifer L. Allen, Ronald M. Rapee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (SciVal)


Many studies have reported that anxious children experience more negative life events than controls. However, studies have not yet addressed the possibility that this difference may be due to comorbidity with non-anxiety disorders. Furthermore, presence of psychopathology may also lead children to act in ways that increases frequency of negative life events and decreases the frequency of positive life events. Mother and child-report versions of a questionnaire measure of life events (CASE) assessed life events in the past 12 months in anxiety-disordered children (n = 198), and controls (n = 88). Mother reports indicated that anxious children experienced more negative and fewer positive behavior-dependent events than control children. Child reports showed a similar pattern, however significant differences were only present between anxious and control groups on the number of negative behavior-dependent events. Results indicated that anxious-control differences remain irrespective of comorbidity with non-anxiety disorders. However, the highest rates of negative life events were present in children with a comorbid disorder. Crown

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)511-518
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Anxiety Disorders
Issue number4
Early online date28 Oct 2008
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2009


  • Child anxiety
  • Comorbidity
  • Independence
  • Negative life events

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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