Longitudinal associations between attachment representations coded in the adult attachment interview in late adolescence and perceptions of romantic relationship adjustment in adulthood

Or Dagan, Marissa D. Nivison, Maria E. Bleil, Cathryn Booth-LaForce, Theodore E.A. Waters, Glenn I. Roisman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Increasingly, researchers have operationalized Adult Attachment Interview (AAI)-derived attachment representations as reflecting individual differences in secure base script knowledge (AAIsbs) – the degree to which individuals show awareness of the temporal-causal schema that summarizes the basic features of seeking and receiving effective support from caregivers when in distress. In a series of pre-registered analyses, we used AAI transcripts recently re-coded for AAIsbs and leveraged a new follow-up assessment of the NICHD Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development cohort at around age 30 years (479 currently partnered participants; 59% female; 82% White/non-Hispanic) to assess and compare the links between AAIsbs and traditional AAI coding measures at around age 18 years and self-reported romantic relationship quality in adulthood. Higher AAIsbs predicted better dyadic adjustment scores in adulthood (r = 0.17) and this association remained significant controlling for other AAI-derived coding measures, as well as sociodemographic and cognitive functioning covariates. Findings extend previous evidence pointing to the predictive significance of AAIsbs for multiple adult functioning domains.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalInfant and Child Development
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2024

Keywords

  • adult attachment interview
  • coherence
  • romantic relationships
  • secure base script knowledge

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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