International Journal of Psychology and Psychological Therapy
  

Volume 16 Num. 1 - March 2016

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Romantic Attachment of Adolescents Abused in Childhood.

Volume 16 Num. 1 - March 2016 - Pages 63-74

Authors:

Alexander Muela , Nekane Balluerka , Bárbara Torres Gómez , Arantxa Gorostiaga

Abstract:

The aim of this study was to examine whether maltreatment experiences in childhood influence romantic attachment style in adolescence. The study included 54 adolescent who had suffered serious family maltreatment, who were separated from their biological families and were in residential care, 63 adolescents who had suffered moderated maltreatment and who were living with their biological families under treatment, and 139 nonmaltreated adolescents. Results indicated that those who have been maltreated during childhood show greater use of avoidance romantic attachment strategy. However, no differences were found in the anxious dimension of attachment. Results are discussed in relation to the normative trends of the attachment models and attachment styles identified in adolescence, and according to the available evidence on the relationship between child maltreatment and romantic attachment styles in this developmental stage. Also, some implications for the therapeutic interventions with maltreated adolescents in their childhood are discussed.

Key words:

attachment, romantic relationships, child maltreatment, adolescence

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