The relationship between loss experience and fear of death; Exploring the correlates of death anxiety
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The present study explored several correlates of death anxiety. Male and female students of Dutch Universities, ranging in age from 17 to 29, were given a questionnaire of which the purpose was to examine the relationship between loss experience, centrality of loss, attachment style, purpose in life, gender and death anxiety. Based on previous research, significant associations between these variables were hypothesized. Findings showed a correlation between CES and death anxiety for respondents with a loss-experience less than 14 months ago. An interaction effect of gender and loss experience was found with regard to the subscale Fear for significant others of the MFODS. Analyses failed to support the hypotheses concerning the variables loss experience, attachment style and purpose in life. The discussion related the pattern of findings to the complexity of the concept of death anxiety. Theoretical and clinical implications of the findings are discussed. Further exploration of the relationship between the CES and death anxiety is suggested, along with suggestions for future research.