The main emotion associated with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is fear but researchers are now starting to look at the way in which other emotions can play a part in maintaining the condition. One such emotion is shame caused when, rather than seeing the world as a more dangerous and threatening place after traumatic events people blame themselves and see themselves as weak and incompetent for allowing them to happen. Researchers from St George's hospital in London looked into the role of shame in a study of 49 people with PTSD. They found that those people with higher levels of shame were more prone to engage in self-criticism and less prone to engage in self-reassuring thinking than people with lower levels of shame.
Harman, Rachel and Lee, Deborah - The role of shame and self-critical thinking in the development and maintenance of current threat in post-traumatic stress disorder Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy January-February 2010, 17(1), 13-24