UBC Undergraduate Research

The Relationship Between Childhood Family Instability, Secure Attachment, and the Sense of Belonging of Young Adults Shlomi, Hilla


This study’s goal was to assess the relationship between childhood family instability and young adults’ sense of belonging. It also tested whether having a secure attachment in childhood moderated this relationship. An on-line questionnaire was completed by 220 first-year psychology students (170 women and 50 men aged 17-30). Family instability was not a significant predictor of sense of belonging, but it had a significant interaction with secure attachment (α = .05). Secure attachment was a good predictor of sense of belonging. Family instability had a positive effect on the sense of belonging of those who had low attachment security. Conclusions about the effects of family instability are limited due to the low levels of instability experienced by this sample.

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