What is it about?

This article is about posttraumatic stress symptoms in heterosexual couples during the first 6 months of COVID-19 related shut-downs in the United States. What was found was that the more posttraumatic stress symptoms people had in April 2020, the more resource loss and gain they and their partners reported in July 2020. Also, the more resource loss people reported in July 2020, the higher their own posttraumatic symptoms were in October 2020.

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Why is it important?

This article is important because it supports theory that suggests that resource loss is an important cause of posttraumatic stress. Focusing on helping people mitigate losses might help with mental health during large scale crises like the global pandemic.


This article really highlights the power of losing resources to cause mental health distress. My hope is that focusing on protecting populations vulnerable to loss will help us better collectively manage the mental health toll that large crises create. In this study, loss was a predictor of more distress where as gain didn't appear protective. In short, it's perhaps more important to prevent loss where we can during crises than it is to give and replace resources in terms of protecting mental health.

Alyssa Banford Witting
Brigham Young University

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Resource loss, gain, and traumatic stress in couples during COVID-19., Psychological Trauma Theory Research Practice and Policy, May 2022, American Psychological Association (APA), DOI: 10.1037/tra0001276.
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