Michelle Garcia Torres

Michelle Garcia Torres

Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico

Title: Adult attachment as a predictor of the family functioning: A study with Mexican mothers


Michelle Garcia-Torres has her expertise in the study of Mexican family (especially single-parents families), parent styles, interpersonal relationships and social support. Her passion is helping women through social programs promoted for the Autonomous University of Mexico and some ONG. She has designed a model to explain family functioning in Mexico considering psychology and ethno psychology aspects. She is part of a new generation of researchers in Mexico.    


Statement of the problem: Attachment is an affectional bond presents in all human beings, a relatively durable union in which the partner is unique. There are four styles that describe the way people relate with their attachment figures: secure, preoccupied, avoidance and fearful. Attachment is a global style that directs the interpersonal relationships, especially with significant others and family members. Researchers have reported an effect of the parents´ attachment over familiar adaptability and cohesion. In addition, it has found that mothers with avoidance style of attachment could have a negative effect to the family system. It has reported that attachment´s styles have different impact depending on the culture. In the case of Mexico avoidance is related to lower relationship satisfaction and more conflict. Mexican family is the source of the most enduring relationships, provides material things and affection. Mexico as a collectivist culture promotes closeness and harmony relationships. The aim of this study was predict the family functioning through attachment´s styles in Mexican mothers.

Methodology & Theoretical Orientation: A quantitative, transversal study was conducted. The sample had 200 participants, with a mean age of 38.48 years (SD = 6.49). All of them responded two Liker-type scales; one evaluates the attachment and the other the family functioning in Mexican people. Five multiple lineal regression analyses were conducted to examine the data.

Findings: Preoccupied and secure were good predictors of positive familiar environment; Conflict inside the family was predicted by preoccupied and fearful; Amusement was predicted only by the secure attachment; Hostility was predicted by fearful and avoidance; and Coalitions were predicted by fearful and preoccupied attachment.

Conclusion & Significance: Attachment impacts the closest and more significant relationships with positive or negative outcomes. Recommendations are made to promote secure attachment to foster harmony and enjoyable relationships.

PAPIIT Project IN306616


Multiple linear regressions for positive family environment


Carreras, M. A., Brizzio, A., González, R., Mele, S.,  Casullo, M. M. (2008). Los estilos de apego en los vínculos románticos y no románticos. Estudio comparativo con adolescentes argentinos y españoles. Revista Iberoamericana de Diagnóstico y Evaluación - e Avaliação Psicológica, 107-124. 

Friedman, M., Rholes, S., Simpson, J., Bond, M., Díaz-Loving, R., Chan, C. (2010). Attachment avoidance and the cultural fit hypothesis: A cross-cultural investigation. Personal Relationships, 17, 107-126.

García-Méndez, M., Rivera-Aragón, S., Díaz-Loving, R., & Reyes-Lagunes, I. (2015). Continuidad y cambio en la familia: factores intervinientes. México: Manual Moderno.

Pedro, M. F., Ribeiro, T., & Shelton, K. H. (2015). Romantic attachment and family functioning: The mediating role of marital satisfaction. Journal of Child & Family Studies, 24(11), 3482-3495. doi: 10.1007/s10826-015-0150-6.

Sheftall, A. H., Mathias, C. W., Furr, R. M., & Dougherty, D. M. (2013).Adolescent attachment security, family functioning, and suicide attempts. Attachment & Human Development, 15(4), 368-383. doi: 10.1080/14616734.2013.782649.

García-Torres, M., & García-Méndez, M. (en prensa), Escala de Apego Adulto no Romántico para población mexicana.

García-Méndez, M. (en prensa). Propiedades psicométricas de la Escala de Funcionamiento Familiar Modificada en una muestra mexicana.


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