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Multiculturalism and Social Work | San Francisco State University

The associations between childhood factors and adult attachment: A study of a gay men.

Author: Landolt, Monica Anne
Author Background: U British Columbia, Canada
Date 7/2000
Type Dissertation
Journal Title: Dissertation-Abstracts-International:-Section-B:-The-Sciences-and-Engineering
Volume/Pages Vol 61(1-B): 588
Subject Matter Anxiety-; *Attachment-Behavior; *Avoidance-; *Male-Homosexuality, Research, Gender, Men
Abstract There are a number of childhood factors reported to be associated with gay male sexual orientation including childhood gender non-conformity and socialization factors such as paternal and peer rejection. Attachment theory suggests that poor quality childhood relationships may be related to anxiety and avoidance attachment dimensions in adulthood. The purpose of this study was to explore the association between these childhood factors and anxiety and avoidance in gay men's close relationships. A community sample of 192 self-identified gay men completed questionnaires and a 2 hour attachment interview. No major findings related to the avoidance dimension were significant. In terms of attachment anxiety, results were partially consistent with attachment theory: paternal and peer, but not maternal, rejection independently predicted anxiety. Quality of peer relationships largely mediated the association between parental rejection and anxiety. In addition, quality of peer relationships mediated the association between gender non-conformity and anxiety. Good quality relationships in one domain did not compensate for poor quality relationships in another domain. The importance of fathers and peers to gay men's current relationship functioning is discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2000 APA, all rights reserved)