Early Attachment Organization With Both Parents and Future Behavior Problems: From Infancy to Middle Childhood


  • This research has been funded by the grants from NIMH, R01 MH63096, and K02 MH01446, from NICHD, R01 HD069171-11, and Stuit Professorship to Grazyna Kochanska. We thank many students and staff members for their help with data collection and coding, particularly Jarilyn Akabogu, Lea Boldt, Jessica O'Bleness, Jeung Eun Yoon, and Jamie Koenig, and all the parents and children in Family Study for their lasting commitment to this research.

Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Grazyna Kochanska, The University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA 52242-1407. Electronic mail may be sent to grazyna-kochanska@uiowa.edu.


Links between children's attachment security with mothers and fathers, assessed in Strange Situation with each parent at 15 months (= 101), and their future behavior problems were examined. Mothers and fathers rated children's behavior problems, and children reported their own behavior problems at age 8 (= 86). Teachers rated behavior problems at age 6½ (= 86). Insecurity with both parents had a robust effect: “Double-insecure” children reported more overall problems, and were rated by teachers as having more externalizing problems than those secure with at least 1 parent. Security with either parent could offset such risks, and security with both conferred no additional benefits. High resistance toward both parents in Strange Situation may confer “dual risk” for future externalizing behavior.