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Mother- and father-child attachment themes in the story completions of pre-schoolers from post-divorce families: do they predict relationships with peers and teachers?
Attach Hum Dev. 2001 Apr; 3(1):1-29.AH

Abstract

Based on Bowlby's claim that 'internal working models' of self-with-parent influence the way a child approaches relationships with others, this study examined attachment representations of 66 pre-schoolers (39 boys, 27 girls) in relation to teachers' or child-care providers' perceptions of their social competence. The study goes beyond previous related studies in three ways: (1) all children were from post-divorce families; (2) mother- and father-child representations were examined separately; and (3) teachers rated their own relationship to the child in addition to children's socially competent behaviors and behavior problems with peers. Attachment representations were assessed with an expanded version of the Attachment Story Completion Task (see Bretherton, Ridgeway, & Cassidy, 1990) adapted for children of divorce by presenting the mother and father as living in separate houses. Hierarchical regression analyses showed that children's enactments of child-mother attachment behavior in their story completions were the best predictor of boys' and girls' teacher-rated social competence. However, boys' and girls' enactments of empathy toward mother and father as well as child-father attachment themes correlated with social competence in opposite directions: For boys, these narrative enactments were related positively to social competence, while for girls, these relationships were negative. Theoretical and methodological implications of the findings for children of divorce and for assessing the working model construct are discussed.

Authors+Show Affiliations

College of Social Work, University of Tennessee, Knoxville 37996-3333, USA. tpage@utk.eduNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

Language

eng

PubMed ID

11708382

Citation

Page, T, and I Bretherton. "Mother- and Father-child Attachment Themes in the Story Completions of Pre-schoolers From Post-divorce Families: Do They Predict Relationships With Peers and Teachers?" Attachment & Human Development, vol. 3, no. 1, 2001, pp. 1-29.
Page T, Bretherton I. Mother- and father-child attachment themes in the story completions of pre-schoolers from post-divorce families: do they predict relationships with peers and teachers? Attach Hum Dev. 2001;3(1):1-29.
Page, T., & Bretherton, I. (2001). Mother- and father-child attachment themes in the story completions of pre-schoolers from post-divorce families: do they predict relationships with peers and teachers? Attachment & Human Development, 3(1), 1-29.
Page T, Bretherton I. Mother- and Father-child Attachment Themes in the Story Completions of Pre-schoolers From Post-divorce Families: Do They Predict Relationships With Peers and Teachers. Attach Hum Dev. 2001;3(1):1-29. PubMed PMID: 11708382.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Mother- and father-child attachment themes in the story completions of pre-schoolers from post-divorce families: do they predict relationships with peers and teachers? AU - Page,T, AU - Bretherton,I, PY - 2001/11/16/pubmed PY - 2002/1/5/medline PY - 2001/11/16/entrez SP - 1 EP - 29 JF - Attachment & human development JO - Attach Hum Dev VL - 3 IS - 1 N2 - Based on Bowlby's claim that 'internal working models' of self-with-parent influence the way a child approaches relationships with others, this study examined attachment representations of 66 pre-schoolers (39 boys, 27 girls) in relation to teachers' or child-care providers' perceptions of their social competence. The study goes beyond previous related studies in three ways: (1) all children were from post-divorce families; (2) mother- and father-child representations were examined separately; and (3) teachers rated their own relationship to the child in addition to children's socially competent behaviors and behavior problems with peers. Attachment representations were assessed with an expanded version of the Attachment Story Completion Task (see Bretherton, Ridgeway, & Cassidy, 1990) adapted for children of divorce by presenting the mother and father as living in separate houses. Hierarchical regression analyses showed that children's enactments of child-mother attachment behavior in their story completions were the best predictor of boys' and girls' teacher-rated social competence. However, boys' and girls' enactments of empathy toward mother and father as well as child-father attachment themes correlated with social competence in opposite directions: For boys, these narrative enactments were related positively to social competence, while for girls, these relationships were negative. Theoretical and methodological implications of the findings for children of divorce and for assessing the working model construct are discussed. SN - 1461-6734 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/11708382/Mother__and_father_child_attachment_themes_in_the_story_completions_of_pre_schoolers_from_post_divorce_families:_do_they_predict_relationships_with_peers_and_teachers L2 - https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/713761897 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -