Adolescents' perceptions of differential parenting: Links with attachment style and adolescent adjustment
The study examines whether adolescent twins' attachment style mediates the association between their perceptions of differential parental treatment and their reported adjustment. Data from a survey of 174 adolescent twins are used to assess the links between twins' reports of differential parental affection and differential parental control, their attachment style, and their reported personal self-esteem, social self-esteem, and anxiety. Twins' reports of having been disfavored in comparison with their co-twin were associated with attachment insecurity, anxiety, and lower personal self-esteem. Attachment was found to mediate the association between the twins' reports of differential parental affection and their reported anxiety and personal self-esteem. The strongest evidence for mediation was found for twins' reports of differential maternal affection in predicting adolescent twins' anxiety.