Interplay between Attachment to Peers and Parents in Korean Adolescents’ Behavior Problems

Joo Young Lee, Soo Hyun Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


The present study investigated the relative contribution of style of peer attachment (secure, anxious, avoidant) and quality of attachment to parents on behavior problems in Korean adolescents. In addition, we examined the role of paternal and maternal attachment separately as a potential moderator in the relationship between style of peer attachment and internalizing and externalizing behavior problems. Middle school students (245 males, 209 females) completed the Korean version of the Adolescent Friendship Attachment Scale, Inventory of Parental and Peer Attachment-Revised, and Youth Self-Report. Attachment to peers and parents as predictors of behavior problems were tested via hierarchical multiple regression analyses. Results revealed that anxious peer attachment remained the strongest predictor of behavior problems among adolescents (internalizing behavior problems β =.18, p <.01; externalizing behavior problems β =.21, p <.001), indicating the relative importance of peer relationship compared to attachment to parents. Paternal attachment significantly moderated the relationship between avoidant peer attachment and externalizing behavior problems (β =.15, p <.05), even when the main effect of avoidant peer attachment on externalizing behavior problems was not significant. Results highlight the role of both attachments to peers and parents on adolescents’ psychological adjustment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)57-66
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Child and Family Studies
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jan 1

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016, Springer Science+Business Media New York.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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