Parent-child attachment and monitoring in middle childhood

Kathryn A. Kerns, Jeffery E. Aspelmeier, Amy L. Gentzler, Chandra M. Grabill

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

215 Citations (Scopus)


Research on parent-child attachment and parental child rearing practices has been pursued independently. The purpose of the present study was to test whether a secure attachment relationship is related to parental monitoring and child efforts to contribute to the monitoring process. This question was examined in a cross-sectional study of third- and sixth-grade children and their parents. Attachment-based measures were used to tap child and parent perceptions of attachment. Monitoring (i.e., parents' awareness of children's whereabouts and activities) was assessed through phone interviews with children and parents. Child contributions to monitoring were assessed with parent and child questionnaires. A more secure attachment was related to closer monitoring and greater cooperation by the child in monitoring situations, especially at sixth grade. The findings illustrate the importance of embedding attachment within a larger child rearing context.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-81
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Family Psychology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2001
Externally publishedYes


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