Journal of School Mental Health
Online ISSN : 2433-1937
Print ISSN : 1344-5944
Original Research
Study of characteristics of university students’ attachment styles by classification of narcissistic vulnerability
Mayumi KOYAYuko OKAMOTOYasuyo TAKANO
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JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

2013 Volume 16 Issue 1 Pages 27-34

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Abstract

In this study, we study the characteristics of attachment styles by classifying university students according to their narcissistic vulnerability.

A paper-based survey of university undergraduate and graduate students was conducted, and the responses of 209 subjects were analyzed. We conducted cluster analysis on an abridged version of the narcissistic vulnerability scale and extracted four groups: the non-vulnerable group, the insufficiency of self-soothing group, the covert sense of entitlement group, and the vulnerable group. We then conducted single-factor ANOVA with the groups as independent variables and attachment styles as dependent variables.

The results showed that “secure” attachment was significantly greater for the insufficiency of selfsoothing and vulnerable groups than for the covert sense of entitlement group. “Secure” attachment was significantly lower for the non-vulnerable group than the insufficiency of self-soothing group. “Ambivalent” attachment was significantly greater for the covert sense of entitlement and vulnerable groups than for the nonvulnerable and the insufficiency of self-soothing groups. “Avoidant” attachment was significantly lower for the insufficiency of self-soothing group than for the other three groups. The non-vulnerable group did not exhibit the “unstable” attachment style, while the vulnerable group did, which showed that the “unstable” attachment style formed between subjects and their primary attachment objects during childhood underlies university students’ narcissistic vulnerability. Also, in contrast to the insufficiency of self-soothing group’s showing a “stable” attachment style, the covert sense of entitlement group showed an “unstable” attachment style.

This suggests that the characteristics of university students’ covert sense of entitlement and insufficiency of self-soothing reflect differences in attachment styles.

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© 2013 The Japan Association for School Mental Health
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