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ADHD Characteristics as Predictors of Adult Attachment Types Debbie J. Pope & Jenna L. Edwards Contact: Dr Debbie Pope,

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Presentation on theme: "ADHD Characteristics as Predictors of Adult Attachment Types Debbie J. Pope & Jenna L. Edwards Contact: Dr Debbie Pope,"— Presentation transcript:

1 ADHD Characteristics as Predictors of Adult Attachment Types Debbie J. Pope & Jenna L. Edwards Contact: Dr Debbie Pope, Background  Adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) may show impaired quality of attachment and increased fear and avoidance in romantic relationships (Abdel-Hamid et al., 2011).  In children, ADHD is consistent with insecure attachments. However it is unknown whether these children continue to experience dysfunctional attachment into adulthood (Clarke et al., 2002).  An excess of ADHD-related behaviours (inattention, impulsivity, hyperactivity) will not elicit warmth, care and proximity, therefore possible that elevated ADHD symptomatology may have a profound effect on attachment type (Comer & Gold, 2012). Participants 105 male (N=30) and female (N=75 undergraduate students, aged years (M=21, SD=4.87) Materials Two self-report questionnaires:  Conners’ Adult ADHD Rating Scales (CAARS) (Conners, Erhardt & Sparrow, 2004) - 30 statements - rate frequency of behaviours (e.g. ‘I am always on the go’ from ‘not at all’ to ‘very much’) from ‘not at all’ to ‘very much’ - 10 minutes to complete  Relationship Scales Questionnaire (RSQ; Griffin & Bartholomew, 1994) - indirect measure of Bartholomew and Horowitz’ (1991) four attachment prototypes (see below) - 30 phrases - rate statements by the extent to which each statement best describes their characteristic style in close relationships by ‘not at all like me’ to ‘very much like me’ - 10 minutes to complete Main Findings  Males score higher than females on both inattention and hyperactivity  Controlling for gender, inattention level predicts level of Secure attachment (higher inattention rating associated with lower Secure attachment rating)  Controlling for gender, inattention level predicts level of Fearful attachment (higher inattention rating associated with higher Fearful attachment rating)  Inattention scores do not predict rating of Preoccupied or Dismissing Attachment types  Hyperactivity scores do not predict ratings of Adult Attachment Type (Secure, Fearful, Dismissing or Preoccupied)  Inattention, rather than hyperactivity, in children may be more likely to predict poorer outcomes for future adult relationships  Implications for social and emotional interventions and support Hyperactivity Inattention Hyperactivity Inattention Hyperactivity Inattention Hyperactivity Preoccupied β = -.35* Dismissing Secure Fearful β =.05 Adult Attachment TypeADHD Characteristic β =.35* β =.08 β =.22 β = -.06 β =.16 β <.01 Figure 2. ADHD Characteristics as Predictors of Adult Attachment Types after controlling for gender (hierarchical multiple regression) Figure 1. Bartholomew’s four-category model of adult attachment Aim of Study To establish whether self-report measures of inattention and hyperactivity present in adult participants can predict adult attachment types. Attribute Gender--27**-.30** CAARS: Inattention--.76**-.23*.22* CAARS: Hyperactivity * RSQ: Secure **.44**.35** 5. RSQ: Fearful **.53** 6. RSQ: Preoccupied RSQ: Dismissing Figure 3. Intercorrelation Matrix of Gender, ADHD and Adult Attachment Measures (N=105)


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