The emotion regulation model of attachment: An emotion-specific approach

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Abstract

This research applies the emotion regulation (ER) model of attachment to the regulation of specific emotions, namely sadness and anger, in early adolescents. The study investigates how attachment and accompanying ER strategies relate to both internalizing and externalizing problems. Two separate cross-sectional studies (N = 197 and N = 310) supported different associations between attachment and ER (i.e., dysregulation and suppression). For attachment avoidance, associations with ER strategies seem to depend on the specific type of emotion involved, whereas attachment anxiety related to dysregulation irrespective of the type of emotions. Furthermore, Study 2 found that attachment anxiety and avoidance are associated with internalizing and externalizing problems via different ER strategies. Discussion focuses on the dynamics involved in associations between attachment, ER, and psychological problems.

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