alexa Transmission of Attachment at Preschool-Age: The Mediat
ISSN: 2375-4494

Journal of Child and Adolescent Behavior
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Research Article

Transmission of Attachment at Preschool-Age: The Mediating Role of Mother- Child Conversation Styles

Chantal Cyr1*, Karine Dubois-Comtois2, Katherine Pascuzzo3, Marie-Julie Béliveau4, and Moss Ellen1

1Université du Québec à Montréal, CP 8888, Succ, Centre-ville, Montréal, H3C 3P8, Canada

2Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières, Canada

3McGill University, Canada

4Rivière-des-Prairies Hospital, Canada

*Corresponding Author:
Chantal Cyr
Université du Québec à Montréal, CP 8888, Succ
Centre-ville, Montréal, H3C 3P8, Canada
Tel: 1-514-987-3000-3265
E-mail: [email protected]

Received Date: October 01, 2014; Accepted Date: October 22, 2014; Published Date: October 28, 2014

Citation: Cyr C, Dubois-Comtois K, Pascuzzo K, Béliveau MJ, Ellen M (2014) Transmission of Attachment at Preschool-Age: The Mediating Role of Mother-Child Conversation Styles. J Child Adolesc Behav 2:171. doi:10.4172/2375-4494.1000171

Copyright: © 2014 Chantal Cyr et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.



Objective: Parents initiate conversations with their preschoolers about everyday experiences in which they share thoughts, feelings, and intentions. The ability to efficiently treat attachment relevant-information and organize attachment behavior beyond infancy is likely to be scaffolded by the parent in the context of parent-child discourse. The objective of this study was to examine mother-child conversation styles as a function of child attachment and test the the role of mother-child conversation as a mediator in the transmission of attachment from mother to child. Methods: The sample included 111 dyads of mothers and their preschool children (3-5 years of age). Child attachment was assessed using the Preschool Attachment Coding System. Mothers’ attachment state of mind was coded using the Adult Attachment Projective. Mother-child conversation styles were assessed during a 10-minute snack time. Results: Analyses indicated a significant correspondence between maternal and child attachment classifications. Moreover, autonomous mothers and secure children were more inclined to integrate affective information during verbal exchanges, while dyads involved in insecure avoidant, ambivalent, or disorganized relationships were more inclined to minimize, exaggerate, or be overwhelmed with affective information. Finally, children’s ability to integrate affective information mediated the link between mother and child attachment security. Conclusion: Overall, results emphasize the importance of the quality of mother-child conversation for the development of internal working models of child attachment during the preschool period. In addition, results are also informative for the development of attachment-based intervention for parents and their preschoolers.


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