The Price of Perspective Taking: Child Depressive Symptoms Interact with Parental Empathy to Predict Immune Functioning in Parents. Manczak, E. M, Basu, D., & Chen, E. Clinical psychological science, 4(3):485--492, May, 2016.
The Price of Perspective Taking: Child Depressive Symptoms Interact with Parental Empathy to Predict Immune Functioning in Parents [link]Paper  doi  abstract   bibtex   
Parental empathy is generally held as a positive characteristic; however, might there be contexts in which parental empathy is actually harmful? The present study examined whether adolescents' depressive symptoms might have immunologic costs for more empathic parents. One hundred forty three parents and their children completed self-report measures of empathy and depressive symptoms, respectively. One year later, production of four pro-inflammatory cytokines in parents' blood was measured in response to in vitro exposure to a bacterial product. Significant interactions across all inflammatory markers emerged, such that parents who were higher in empathy showed greater inflammatory cytokine production if their children also reported high levels of depressive symptoms, but lower cytokine production if their children reported low levels of symptoms. Less empathic parents showed the opposite pattern. These results provide support for the hypothesis that parents high in empathy may be especially sensitive physiologically to their children's psychopathologic symptoms.
@article{manczak_price_2016,
	title = {The {Price} of {Perspective} {Taking}: {Child} {Depressive} {Symptoms} {Interact} with {Parental} {Empathy} to {Predict} {Immune} {Functioning} in {Parents}},
	volume = {4},
	issn = {2167-7026, 2167-7034},
	url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/2167702615595001},
	doi = {10.1177/2167702615595001},
	abstract = {Parental empathy is generally held as a positive characteristic; however, might there be contexts in which parental empathy is actually harmful? The present study examined whether adolescents' depressive symptoms might have immunologic costs for more empathic parents. One hundred forty three parents and their children completed self-report measures of empathy and depressive symptoms, respectively. One year later, production of four pro-inflammatory cytokines in parents' blood was measured in response to in vitro exposure to a bacterial product. Significant interactions across all inflammatory markers emerged, such that parents who were higher in empathy showed greater inflammatory cytokine production if their children also reported high levels of depressive symptoms, but lower cytokine production if their children reported low levels of symptoms. Less empathic parents showed the opposite pattern. These results provide support for the hypothesis that parents high in empathy may be especially sensitive physiologically to their children's psychopathologic symptoms.},
	language = {en},
	number = {3},
	journal = {Clinical psychological science},
	author = {Manczak, Erika M and Basu, Devika and Chen, Edith},
	month = may,
	year = {2016},
	pmid = {27217983},
	keywords = {Mental Health/Bioethics: Quality of Suffering},
	pages = {485--492}
}
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