J Korean Med Sci.  2015 Nov;30(11):1667-1674. 10.3346/jkms.2015.30.11.1667.

The Protective Role of Resilience in Attenuating Emotional Distress and Aggression Associated with Early-life Stress in Young Enlisted Military Service Candidates

  • 1Department of Communication, Yonsei University, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Department of Psychiatry, Gangnam Severance Hospital, Institute of Behavioural Science in Medicine, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. johnstein@yuhs.ac
  • 3Gyeonggi Northern Region Military Manpower Office, Uijeongbu, Korea.
  • 4Department of Psychiatry, Hallym University Sacred Heart Hospital, Anyang, Korea.


Early life stress (ELS) may induce long-lasting psychological complications in adulthood. The protective role of resilience against the development of psychopathology is also important. The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationships among ELS, resilience, depression, anxiety, and aggression in young adults. Four hundred sixty-one army inductees gave written informed consent and participated in this study. We assessed psychopathology using the Korea Military Personality Test, ELS using the Childhood Abuse Experience Scale, and resilience with the resilience scale. Analyses of variance, correlation analyses, and hierarchical multiple linear regression analyses were conducted for statistical analyses. The regression model explained 35.8%, 41.0%, and 23.3% of the total variance in the depression, anxiety, and aggression indices, respectively. We can find that even though ELS experience is positively associated with depression, anxiety, and aggression, resilience may have significant attenuating effect against the ELS effect on severity of these psychopathologies. Emotion regulation showed the most beneficial effect among resilience factors on reducing severity of psychopathologies. To improve mental health for young adults, ELS assessment and resilience enhancement program should be considered.


Depression; Anxiety; Aggression; Early-life Stress; Interparental Violence; Resilience; Emotion Regulation; Optimism
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