Self-reported romantic attachment style predicts everyday maternal caregiving behavior at home

Emre Selcuk*, Gül Günaydin, Nebi Sumer, Mehmet Harma, Selin Salman, Cindy Hazan, Burak Dogruyol, Ahu Ozturk

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

65 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Although numerous studies examined how individual differences in mothers' discourse about their early attachment experiences are associated with their caregiving behaviors toward their children, research examining how self-reported romantic attachment style is associated with maternal caregiving has been very limited. To help fill this gap, we examined whether self-reported romantic attachment style is associated with maternal caregiving behaviors observed in home settings. Mother-child interactions were observed for three hours and the mothers completed measures of attachment style and child temperament. Results indicated that attachment-related avoidance, but not attachment-related anxiety, was negatively associated with global maternal sensitivity, after controlling for the child's temperament. Consistent with the propositions of attachment theory, both attachment-related avoidance and anxiety were associated with specific caregiving themes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)544-549
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Research in Personality
Volume44
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2010
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The study was supported by the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (Grant 105K102 ).

Other keywords

  • Adult attachment style
  • Attachment anxiety
  • Attachment avoidance
  • Home observation
  • Maternal caregiving
  • Q-sort

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