Analysis of Attachment Style and Coping Strategies for Parents of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorde

Georgiana Iacob, Alois Gherguț

This study presents the results of an investigation into the role of the attachment style (secure, anxious, avoidant, ambivalent) and the perception of parental self-efficacy in adopting different coping mechanisms by parents who care for a child with autism spectrum disorder. The study was attended by 76 parents (24 male and 52 female) from rural and urban areas. The results indicate that parents with a secure attachment style will adopt both self-sufficient approach-oriented coping as well as the socially-supported approach-oriented coping. Parents with ambivalent attachment style are oriented towards avoidance. According to another confirmed study hypothesis, participants with high levels of perceived parental self-efficacy will predominantly adopt coping mechanisms geared to self-sufficiency and social support, and a low level of perceived parental self-efficacy correlates with the adoption of avoidance-oriented coping mechanisms. Correlative results explain the variance of self-efficacy in relation to attachment style; thus, a high level of perceived parental self-efficacy and a secure attachment style lead to the adoption of adaptive coping mechanisms, while an ambivalent style and low level of self-efficacy lead to avoidance-oriented coping mechanisms.

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD), attachment style, coping strategies, self-efficacy, parenting

GEORGIANA IACOB – MA student, Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University, Iaşi, Romania. E-mail:
ALOIS GHERGUȚ – PhD Professor, Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University, Iaşi, Romania, E-mail:

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