Overparenting, adult attachment styles, and caregiver attitudes while raising a virtual child
LE3 .A278 2022
Bachelor of Science
The present study examined the relationship between overparenting behaviours, adult attachment styles, and caregiver attitudes developed while raising a virtual child. 117 students registered in developmental psychology courses participated in an online survey administered through LimeSurvey. Participants completed measures of overparenting behaviours and attachment styles at Time 1 before raising their child to 18 years old using the MyVirtualChild© program, and the same measures after rising their child at Time 2 in addition to measures of caregivers’ attitudes towards the child. For the attachment styles, anxiety and avoidance were found to be negatively related to caregiver attitudes, and hierarchal regressions showed avoidance, but not anxiety, was a negative predictor of the positive caregiver attitudes of perceived child security and willingness to serve as an attachment figure, but not positive feelings towards the child. Overparenting from the participant’s own mother was positively related to anxious attachment style and how they saw themselves as overparenting parents was negatively related to avoidance, but not anxiety. Overparenting measures did not predict caregiver attitudes. The present study’s findings show avoidance in adult attachment styles, but not overparenting, predicts caregiver attitudes even when raising a virtual child in a simulated parenting experience.
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