ERIC Number: ED333994
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Apr
Children's Attachment Classification and Parental Divorce as Predictors of Their Understanding of Marriage and Divorce.
The possibility was explored that children's attachments to their mothers may provide an internal working model for their cognitions of marriage and divorce. Subjects were 112 children in kindergarten, second, and fourth grade who were living with nondivorced or divorced parents. The mean length of time since parents' separation and divorce was 56 months and 39 months, respectively. All subjects were white and middle-class, and all were interviewed individually at one of four public elementary schools. Data were collected with an assessment of the mental representation of the self in relation to attachment (Cassidy, 1988) and a semi-structured interview that asked children about marriage, divorce, remarriage, and stepparents. Analysis of covariance showed a significant main effect for parents' marital status and a significant interaction between representation of the attachment relationship and parents' marital status. Children living with nondivorced parents whose representations of the self in attachment were classified as insecure were more likely to focus on superficial behaviors of spouses, stepparents, and stepchildren than were children whose representations were of secure attachments or whose parents were divorced. (Author/RH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development (Seattle, WA, April 18-20, 1991).