This study examined the relation between attachment to opposite sex parents and attachment to romantic partners. Previous research has indicated that attachments to parents closely resemble attachments to romantic partners (Hazan & Shaver, 1987). However, little research has examined whether attachment to the mother or father is more predictive of attachment to romantic partners, and whether this varies by gender. The present study surveyed 236 college students about their attachment to parents, as well as romantic partners. We hypothesized that attachment to opposite sex parents would be significantly related to attachment with romantic partners. Results indicated that those who exhibit trust, communication, or alienation with opposite sex parents show significant positive correlations with fearful attachment styles to romantic partners. Furthermore, attachments to same sex parents showed similar results. This study can provide an important contribution to the understanding of how trust, communication, and alienation from parents influences adult romantic relationships.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/mary_pritchard/4/