Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)


Graduate Department of Clinical Psychology

First Advisor

Celeste Jones, PsyD

Second Advisor

Winston Seegobin, PsyD

Third Advisor

Glena Andrews, PhD


Research done by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) found that adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) such as abuse, household challenges, and neglect were linked to later health risks in life and overall well-being (CDC, 2019). Adverse experiences occur worldwide in a variety of culturally-specific ways. Research involving youth in Trinidad and Tobago outlines emerging concerns with violence in homes, communities, and schools (Baker-Henningham et al., 2009). Currently, however, there is limited data on adverse experiences and their long-term impact in Trinidad and Tobago. Trinidadians (n = 79), born and lived in Trinidad till 18 years was surveyed, ranging from ages of 18-65, 11 males and 68 females. Participants were given a demographic survey, an ACEs questionnaire (Felliti et al., 1998), and the Connor-Davidson Resilience Scale (CD-RISC; Connor & Davidson, 2003). Male participants reported more ACEs than female with half of the male sample reporting four or more. Using Independent-Samples Mann Whitney U no significant differences were found by gender groups for ACEs Total, Emotional Abuse, Sex Abuse, Physical Abuse, Neglect, Exposure to Violence, and Resilience Total (CD-RISC). Whereas, using the Kruskal-Wallis Test significant differences were found between relationship status groups on physical abuse as well as differences between racial/ethnic groups on emotional abuse. Family SES history was moderately negatively corelated with Total ACEs, emotional abuse, neglect, physical abuse and being bullied. There was no significant relationship between total number of ACEs reported and Resilience, however, older individuals reported a higher level of resilience. These findings support the need for continued research exploring the adverse experiences in Trinidad and the role of resilience as a mediator.