Catastrophizing is the process of inferring the consequences of something unfortunate in ones life as being worse than what it probably would be. Catastrophizing is theorized to be a risk factor for hopelessness which could lead to depression, according to the Hopelessness Theory of Depression.
The aim of this project is to examine whether children who consistently infer pessimistic consequences (i.e. tend to assume consequences will be catastrophic referred to as catastrophizing) are at increased risk of developing symptoms of depression. It is hypothesized that catastrophizing will be a strong predictor of depressive symptoms in younger children who exhibit comorbid elevated levels of anxious and depressive symptoms. The project aims to increase our understanding of some of the factors that may contribute to the development of depression in children.