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Attachment in preadolescence

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Date Issued:
2008
Summary:
This one-year longitudinal study was designed to illuminate the direction of the causal arrow between children's perceptions of their mother's behavior and children's attachment style during a period of development that has been relatively neglected in research on attachment - preadolescence. The possibility that children's behavior problems moderate the influence of perceived parenting on attachment, or of attachment on perceived parenting, was also investigated. Participants were an ethnically diverse sample of 407 children (213 girls, 194 boys) who were in the fourth grade at initial testing (M age = 11 years 1 month). Measures included children's perceptions of five maternal behaviors (harassment, overprotectiveness, monitoring, affectionate contact, and reliable support), peer reports of children's behavior problems (internalizing and externalizing), and children's self-perceived attachment styles (preoccupied and avoidant). Contrary to a traditional attachment perspective, there was limited evidence that perceptions of parenting led to change in children's attachment styles. Though children with internalizing problems who perceived their mother as harassing developed preoccupied attachment over time, and children with externalizing problems who perceived their mother as v overprotective developed avoidant attachment over time. However, there was considerable support for the reverse causal hypothesis that children's attachment style influences how they perceive their mother: Preoccupied attachment predicted increasingly favorable perceptions of maternal behavior over time (reduced harassment and increased monitoring), whereas avoidant attachment predicted increasingly unfavorable perceptions of the mother over time (increased harassment, reduced monitoring, reduced affectionate contact, and reduced reliable support). Children's behavior problems moderated a few of these relations.
Title: Attachment in preadolescence: consequence or cause of children's perceptions of parenting ?.
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Name(s): Menon, Meenakshi
Florida Atlantic University
Charles E. Schmidt College of Science
Department of Psychology
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Electronic Thesis Or Dissertation
Date Issued: 2008
Publisher: Florida Atlantic University
Physical Form: electronic
Extent: viii, 89 p. : ill.
Language(s): English
Summary: This one-year longitudinal study was designed to illuminate the direction of the causal arrow between children's perceptions of their mother's behavior and children's attachment style during a period of development that has been relatively neglected in research on attachment - preadolescence. The possibility that children's behavior problems moderate the influence of perceived parenting on attachment, or of attachment on perceived parenting, was also investigated. Participants were an ethnically diverse sample of 407 children (213 girls, 194 boys) who were in the fourth grade at initial testing (M age = 11 years 1 month). Measures included children's perceptions of five maternal behaviors (harassment, overprotectiveness, monitoring, affectionate contact, and reliable support), peer reports of children's behavior problems (internalizing and externalizing), and children's self-perceived attachment styles (preoccupied and avoidant). Contrary to a traditional attachment perspective, there was limited evidence that perceptions of parenting led to change in children's attachment styles. Though children with internalizing problems who perceived their mother as harassing developed preoccupied attachment over time, and children with externalizing problems who perceived their mother as v overprotective developed avoidant attachment over time. However, there was considerable support for the reverse causal hypothesis that children's attachment style influences how they perceive their mother: Preoccupied attachment predicted increasingly favorable perceptions of maternal behavior over time (reduced harassment and increased monitoring), whereas avoidant attachment predicted increasingly unfavorable perceptions of the mother over time (increased harassment, reduced monitoring, reduced affectionate contact, and reduced reliable support). Children's behavior problems moderated a few of these relations.
Summary: Overall, results support a "child effects" interpretation of the links between perceived parenting and attachment styles during preadolescence.
Identifier: 231685386 (oclc), 58007 (digitool), FADT58007 (IID), fau:4293 (fedora)
Note(s): by Meenakshi Menon.
Vita.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Florida Atlantic University, 2008.
Includes bibliography.
Electronic reproduction. Boca Raton, FL : 2008 Mode of access: World Wide Web.
Subject(s): Parent and teenager
Attachment behavior in adolescence
Child rearing -- United States
Parenting -- Psychological aspects
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/FAU/58007
Use and Reproduction: http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC/1.0/
Owner Institution: FAU