Features of Attachment in Father- daughter Relationship and Depressive Symptoms in Daughters Among Emerging Adults


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Date of Award

Summer 8-11-2023

Document Type

Applied Project

Degree Name

Master of Science in Research Psychology (MS)




Jenny Lee Vaydich

Second Reader

Jessica Fossum


Father-daughter attachment relationship, Parental attachment, Trust, Communication, Alienation, Depressive symptoms


Parent-child attachment has been found to be associated with depressive symptoms. However, previous studies mostly focused on both parents without distinction or just mothers while father-child attachment is understudied. Very few studies have focused on specifically the father-daughter attachment relationship compared to other family ties and there is even fewer studies focused on father-daughter relationship and depressive symptoms in emerging adulthood despite the increased rate of depression in this developmental stage. Therefore, the present study investigated the features of attachment in father-daughter relationships and their association with depressive symptoms in daughters during emerging adulthood. Drawing on attachment theory, 116 daughters from an existing data set who completed the father sub-scale of the Inventory of Parent and Peer Attachment (IPPA) and Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CESD) were used to examine whether father-daughter trust, communication, and alienation predict depressive symptoms in daughters. Data were analyzed using correlation and multiple linear regression and checked with bootstrapped linear regression. Findings indicated that only father-daughter alienation significantly and positively predicted emerging adult daughters’ depressive symptoms while trust and communication did not support the proposed hypotheses, they did not significantly predict depressive symptoms.

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