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FIGUEIREDO, Bárbara; PACHECO, Alexandra; COSTA, Raquel  and  MAGARINHO, Rute. Attachment and significant relationship’s quality during pregnancy. Psicologia [online]. 2006, vol.20, n.1, pp.65-96. ISSN 0874-2049.

This study is aimed to investigate the quality of the pregnant woman’s attachment and significant relationships during pregnancy. More precisely it intends (1) to deter­mine social and demographic characteristics as well as previous conditions of existence that may predict an (in)secure attachment style (2) to estimate the attach­ment style’s impact on the quality of the relationship and support by the partner and another significant person, during pregnancy. A sample of 130 pregnant women (66 adolescents and 64 adults) was evaluated in the last trimester of gesta­tion on the attachment style and on the quality of the relationship and support from the partner and another significant person (on the basis of the Atta­chment Style Interview, ASI, Bifulco, Figueiredo, Guedeney, Gorman, Hays et al., 2004; Bifulco, Moran, Ball & Bernazzani, 2002a; Bifulco, Moran, Ball & Lillie, 2002b). The sample was collected at the Júlio Dinis Maternity Hospital (Porto, Portugal) and is very heterogeneous regarding social and demographic characteristics, such as: age, educational level, marital status, occupational status and family unit, though it is mainly composed of primiparous pregnant. The results showed that the pregnant childhood parental divorce/separation and present unemployment predict an insecure attachment style, and an association between teen pregnancy and an dismissing attachment style. The results also showed that an insecure attachment style predicts a worse relationship with the partner, as well as a worse relationship with the significant other, principally the presence of discordant relationships with the partner and of apathetic relationships with the significant other. Enmeshed strategies affects the relationship with the partner (in aspects as less trust, poor emotional support and more negative inter­action), but not with the significant other, while dismissive strategies affect the relationship with the significant other (in aspects as less shared activities and poor positive interaction), but not with the partner, and fearful strategies affect both the relationship with the partner (in aspects as poor attachment) and the relationship with the significant other (in aspects as less trust). One concludes according to attachment theory that previous and present adverse conditions of existence increase attachment insecurity and that attachment style interferes in the quality of the relationship with the partner and with significant others, namely in the pregnant ability to seek support.

Keywords : attachment; pregnancy; relationship with partner; relationships with significant others.

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