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Child Dev. 1988 Feb;59(1):135-46.

Attachment in late adolescence: working models, affect regulation, and representations of self and others.

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University of Denver.


The purpose of this study was to examine the coherence of attachment organization during late adolescence. In a sample of 53 first-year college students, 3 kinds of working models of attachment were assessed with the Adult Attachment Interview: Dismissing of Attachment, Secure, and Preoccupied with Attachment. Affect regulation was evaluated with peer Q-sort ratings of Ego-Resiliency, Ego-Undercontrol, Hostility, and Anxiety, and representations of self and others were assessed with self-report measures of distress, perceived competence, and social support. The Secure group was rated as more ego-resilient, less anxious, and less hostile by peers and reported little distress and high levels of social support. The Dismissing group was rated low on ego-resilience and higher on hostility by peers and reported more distant relationships in terms of more loneliness and low levels of social support from family. The Preoccupied group was viewed as less ego-resilient and more anxious by peers and reported high levels of personal distress, while viewing their family as more supportive than the Dismissing group. These findings are interpreted in terms of different styles of affect regulation and representational bias associated with particular working models of attachment.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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