Grazia Attili, Patrizia Vermigli, Antonio Roazzi

Parents' attachment internal working models and the change of parenting style: influence on children's social status and father's role

  • Abstract

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Keywords: parents' attachment, observed quality of parent-child relationships, children's peer acceptance, role of father.

This study examined the association between parents' attachment working models (IWM), the observed quality of mother-child and father-child relationships, and children's peer social status. Forty-four 7-9 years olds were observed and videotaped at home while interacting separately with their mothers and fathers. Interactions were coded on global measures of positive, negative, controlling, disconfirming, correcting behaviors and neutral conversation. Children's peer acceptance at school was assessed by sociometric techniques. IWM were assessed by AAI. Our results indicate strong associations between parents' IWM and the quality of relationships with their children. Dismissing and entangled parents were keen to be less positive, more negative, controlling and disconfirming than secure ones. A high percentage of insecure parents had children who were rejected at school. The influence of a secure partner on the other 's parenting style and on children's social success was also studied.

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