Relations among perceived parental rearing behaviors, attachment style, and worry in anxious children

Amy M. Brown, Stephen P. Whiteside

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


The present study extended the findings of Muris et al. [Muris, P., Meesters, C., Merckelbach, H., & Hulsenbeck, P. (2000). Worry in children is related to perceived parental rearing and attachment. Behavior Research and Therapy, 38, 487-497] regarding the relations between perceived parental rearing behaviors, self-reported attachment style, and worry in a community sample to a clinical sample of anxious children. Sixty-four children and adolescents, aged 7-18 years, with a primary anxiety disorder completed (a) the EMBU-C, a questionnaire measuring perceptions of parental rearing behaviors, (b) a single-item measure of attachment style, and (c) an index of worry severity. Findings revealed that child rated parental rearing behaviors, particularly parental rejection, were positively related to child worry. Self-reported attachment style was also related to worry, such that children who classified themselves as ambivalently attached reported higher levels of worry than did children who classified themselves as securely attached. Parenting style and attachment were found to make independent contributions to worry. The results are compared to those from Muris et al.'s community study, and implications for future research are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)263-272
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of anxiety disorders
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2008


  • Attachment
  • Childhood anxiety disorders
  • Parental rearing behaviors
  • Worry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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