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Effects of Parental Attachment Style and Parental Expectations on Family Conflict in Families with Adolescents
Unformatted Document Text:  Attachment and Family Influence on Adolescence 4 under-emphasized in the research is looking more carefully at the influence of parental factors on the adolescent and the family. Methodologically, assessment of family functioning based on the data obtained from different sources should provide more insight than those that consider either the perspective of the parent or the adolescent. The perceptions of an adolescent and his or her parents contribute three different perspectives on family functioning – the perspectives of the child, the father, and the mother (Shek, 1997, p. 467). Review of Literature Family Interactions and Mutual Influence Chu and Powers (1995) identify the role of synchrony in the family as a contributor to adolescent adjustment. Synchrony has been described in various ways. Descriptions use terms such as coordination of movement, harmonious and simultaneous responsiveness, and patterns of reciprocation. Simply stated, it can be thought of as a dynamic force running from infancy to adulthood. Synchronous families allow adolescents to individuate and establish an identity that is not tied to parents. The argument that synchrony affects adolescent adjustment is consistent with the attachment literature perspective on adolescent autonomy. According to Cassidy and Shaver (1999), from an attachment perspective, adolescence is a transitional period. At the onset of this period, the adolescent is beginning to make tremendous efforts to become less dependent on caregiving from primary attachment figures; in most cases, this is the parent. In only a few years, during late adolescence and early adulthood, the individual is faced with the prospect of becoming an attachment figure to his or her own offspring. Yet, adolescence is not simply the span that bridges these two periods of intense involvement with attachment experiences. Rather, it is a period of profound transformation in specific emotional, cognitive, and behavioral

Authors: Allen, Donna. and Rangarajan, Sripriya.
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Attachment and Family Influence on Adolescence 4
under-emphasized in the research is looking more carefully at the influence of parental factors on
the adolescent and the family. Methodologically, assessment of family functioning based on the
data obtained from different sources should provide more insight than those that consider either
the perspective of the parent or the adolescent. The perceptions of an adolescent and his or her
parents contribute three different perspectives on family functioning – the perspectives of the
child, the father, and the mother (Shek, 1997, p. 467).
Review of Literature
Family Interactions and Mutual Influence
Chu and Powers (1995) identify the role of synchrony in the family as a contributor to
adolescent adjustment. Synchrony has been described in various ways. Descriptions use terms
such as coordination of movement, harmonious and simultaneous responsiveness, and patterns of
reciprocation. Simply stated, it can be thought of as a dynamic force running from infancy to
adulthood. Synchronous families allow adolescents to individuate and establish an identity that is
not tied to parents. The argument that synchrony affects adolescent adjustment is consistent with
the attachment literature perspective on adolescent autonomy. According to Cassidy and Shaver
(1999), from an attachment perspective, adolescence is a transitional period. At the onset of this
period, the adolescent is beginning to make tremendous efforts to become less dependent on
caregiving from primary attachment figures; in most cases, this is the parent. In only a few years,
during late adolescence and early adulthood, the individual is faced with the prospect of
becoming an attachment figure to his or her own offspring. Yet, adolescence is not simply the
span that bridges these two periods of intense involvement with attachment experiences. Rather,
it is a period of profound transformation in specific emotional, cognitive, and behavioral


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