This study extends L. G. Calhoun and R. G. Tedeschi’s (1998) model of posttraumatic growth (PTG), positive change resulting from the struggle with trauma, to children by exploring the construct among youngsters who experienced Hurricane Floyd and the subsequent flooding. Despite burgeoning interest in PTG, few studies have examined the phenomenon among non–adults. This first systematic study of PTG in children explores hypothesized linkages among PTG and social support, competency beliefs, and ruminative thinking. Results suggest that competency beliefs relate to PTG and that a supportive social environment and ruminative thinking are associated with positive competency beliefs. Contrary to expectations, social support did not relate to rumination. Findings testify to the merit of studying the PTG process in children. Clinical implications and future directions are considered.
Cryder, C. H., Kilmer, R. P., Tedeschi, R. G., & Calhoun, L. G. (2006). An exploratory study of posttraumatic growth in children following a natural disaster. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 76(1), 65-69.