A longitudinal study of attachment and self-processes
LE3 .A278 1998
Master of Science
Concurrent and predictive relations of child-mother attachment security to self-concept and self-esteem in 29, 5-year-old children were examined. Self-concept was measured using The Pictorial Scale of Perceived Competence and Social Acceptance for Young Children (Harter & Pike, 1984). Self-esteem was measured using the Puppet Interview (Cassidy, 1988), and groups were formed based on whether children portrayed themselves in a positive or negative manner (positive vs. negative) and whether they were able to admit imperfections about themselves or not (open vs. closed). Q-sort attachment security at two and five years of age did not predict overall self-concept. Attachment security scores also did not differ across self-esteem classification groups. However, a significant interaction of age by openness was found. Children classified as open had lower attachment security scores at age 2 than at age 5, whereas children classified as closed had no change in security scores between ages. Children classified as open spoke more words during the interview than those classified as closed, but this confound did not account for this interaction. Contrary to expectations, self-concept and self-esteem measures were unrelated. Results are discussed in terms of goodness-of-fit models of parenting, internal working models of children, and methodological considerations.
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