Date of Award
Master of Science
Dr. Greg Moran
This study examined patterns of attachment shared between 50 mothers and their 2
children when each was 12 months old, and explored the extent to which maternal sensitivity, interactive behaviour, and sibling gender might account for concordance in sibling attachment relationships. Concordance was highest (62%) when based on 2-way secondary attachment classifications, and decreased when Disorganization was considered. Global sensitivity scores could not distinguish between the quality of maternal interaction with concordant-secure and non-concordant infants. Examining the content of maternal interaction suggested that, contrary to theoretical prediction, mothers of non-concordant infants interacted similarly with each, while mothers of concordant infants adopted a flexible style of interaction across siblings. This pattern also appeared in mothers’ representations of each child’s attachment relationship. Although sibling gender correspondence was unrelated to concordance, mothers of different-gendered siblings appeared more flexible in their representations and interactive behaviour. Implications for theory and clinical intervention are discussed.
O'Connor, Kathleen A., "EXPLORING THE ROOTS OF ATTACHMENT WITHIN THE FAMILY: EVIDENCE OF THE ROLE OF NON-SHARED SOCIAL EXPERIENCE" (2009). Digitized Theses. 4054.