National Catholic Register

Culture of Life

Diminishing Returns on ‘Venting’ Investments

Facts of Life

BY John Lilly

August 12-18, 2007 Issue | Posted 8/7/07 at 1:47 PM


Lots of kids today are told to verbally “vent” over their problems, frustrations and sources of anger. But a new study shows that, for girls, chronic complaining doesn’t help matters — it makes things worse. Published in the July edition of the journal Developmental Psychology, the study revealed that “excessive discussions and rumination about problems” increased girls’ incidence of anxiety and depression. Meanwhile, among boys, the researchers found no correlation between venting and psychological setbacks. Lead researcher Amanda Rose, assistant professor of psychology at the University of Missouri, said that, for girls, “talking about problems is a good thing, but too much talk is too much of a good thing.”