Previous research has suggested that one’s primary attachment figure will continue to be the most important figure throughout their life, therefore being the most influential on their well-being. Recent research has been focusing on how the existence of multiple close relationships simultaneously could influence well-being. The present research examined the close relationships to see which attachment figure is the most influential on well-being during adolescence and adulthood. The 92 participants were from USA, between the ages 19 and 70, and were recruited via mTurk. An ECR-RS questionnaire was given to the participants to examine their attachment to their three close attachment figures (mother, best friend, and romantic partner), which had the same nine questions. The Psychological Well-being Scale was used to measure the well-being of each participant. For each participant, their attachment styles (avoidant and anxious) were looked at to see the influence on well-being. The results showed a significant relationship between insecure attachment styles and well-being. A linear regression model for participants between the age 19 and 30 showed that friend anxiety was the strongest predictor of well-being, with mother avoidance being a close second. The results of another linear regression analysis showed that romantic partner anxiety was the strongest predictor of well-being for adults between the ages 31 and 70. Friend avoidance was also a significant predictor of well-being for this age range. Preferences in close relationships shifts from mothers to peers as people grow older irrespective of the attachment styles being secure, or insecure. However, having an insecure attachment style negatively impacts well-being.

Keywords: attachment, well-being, insecure attachment style, mother, best friend, romantic partner


Garcia, Amber




Developmental Psychology


Attachment, Peers, Mother, Well-being

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



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