Psikhologicheskie Issledovaniya • ISSN 2075-7999
peer-reviewed • open access journal


2019 Vol. 12 Issue 63

Ulybina E.V. The contribution of age, the nature of relationships and material independence in measuring attachment in women

Full text in Russian: Улыбина Е.В. Вклад возраста, характера отношений и материальной самостоятельности в измерения привязанности у женщин

Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Moscow, Russia

About author
Suggested citation

According to the attachment theory of John Bowlby, working relationship models have high ontogenetic stability, however situational factors, including adverse circumstances, can have an effect on intensity of anxiety degree and avoidant behavior in relationships. One of the significant factors potentially influencing the nature of attachment to a romantic partner for women may be the level of material independence, which increases self-confidence. According to cross-cultural studies, the level of anxiety in relationships decreases with age, and the level of avoidance increases, which is due, among other things, to environmental factors. As we expect, one of these factors may be an increase in material independence, which usually increases with age. The study focuses on testing the hypothesis that the level of financial independence for women makes a greater contribution than age to reducing anxiety and increasing avoidance. Analysis of obtained data (n = 2127 females, from 21 to 60 years old with an average age of 40,1), collected via online forms in social media sites, partly proves the hypothesis. Increase of financial independence lowers level of anxiety in relationship for women in committed relationship and for single women and doesn`t contribute to changes in level of avoidance in relationship. Contribution of financial independence is more significant for women in committed relationship than for single women, contribution of age is not significant, and for single women lower level of anxiety is dependent both from age and level of financial independence. Connection between financial independence and age is insignificant in all cases.

Keywords: attachment theory, age-related changes of avoidance in relationships, age-related changes of anxiety in relationships, material independence of women



Agishtein P., Brumbaugh C. Cultural variation in adult attachment: The impact of ethnicity, collectivism, and country of origin. Journal of Social, Evolutionary, and Cultural Psychology, 2013, 7(4), 384–405.

Baldwin M.W., Keelan J.P.R., Fehr B., Enns V., Koh-Rangarajoo E. Social-cognitive conceptualization of attachment working models: Availability and accessibility effects. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 1996, 71(1), 94–109.

Bejanyan K., Marshall T.C., Ferenczi N. Romantic ideals, mate preferences, and anticipation of future difficulties in marital life: a comparative study of young adults in India and America. Frontiers in Psychology, 2014, Vol. 5, 1355.

Belsky J., Schlomer G.L., Ellis B.J. Beyond cumulative risk: Distinguishing harshness and unpredictability as determinants of parenting and early life history strategy. Developmental Psychology, 2012, 48(3), 662–673.

Belsky J., Steinberg L., Draper P. Childhood experience, interpersonal development, and reproductive strategy: An evolutionary theory of socialization. Child Development, 1991, 62(4), 647–670.

Bowlby J. Privyazannost' [Attachment]. Moscow: Gardariki, 2003. (in Russian)

Brennan K.A., Shaver P.R. Dimensions of adult attachment, affect regulation, and romantic relationship functioning. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 1995, 21(3), 267–283.

Campbell L., Marshall T. Anxious attachment and relationship processes: An interactionist perspective. Journal of Personality, 2011, 79(6), 1219–1250.

Chopik W.J., Edelstein R.S. Age differences in romantic attachment around the world. Social Psychological and Personality Science, 2014, 5(8), 892–900.

Chopik W.J., Edelstein R.S., Fraley R.C. From the cradle to the grave: Age differences in attachment from early adulthood to old age. Journal of Personality, 2013, 81(2), 171–183.

Chopik W.J., Edelstein R.S., Grimm K.J. Longitudinal changes in attachment orientation over a 59-year period. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 2017.

Chopik W.J., Motyl M. Ideological fit enhances interpersonal orientations. Social Psychological and Personality Science, 2016, 7(8), 759–768.

Collins N.L. Working models of attachment: Implications for explanation, emotion, and behavior. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 1996, 71(4), 810–832.

Doherty R.W., Hatfield E., Thompson K., Choo P. Cultural and ethnic influences on love and attachment. Personal Relationships, 1994, 1(4), 391–398.

Donnellan M.B., Burt S.A., Levendosky A.A., Klump K.L. Genes, personality, and attachment in adults: A multivariate behavioral genetic analysis. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 2008, 34(1), 3–16.

Fraley R.C. Attachment stability from infancy to adulthood: Meta-analysis and dynamic modeling of developmental mechanisms. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 2002, 6(2), 123–151.

Fraley R.C., Shaver P.R. Adult romantic attachment: Theoretical developments, emerging controversies, and unanswered questions. Review of General Psychology, 2000, 4(2), 132–154.

Gillath O., Shaver P.R., Baek J.M., Chun D.S. Genetic correlates of adult attachment style. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 2008, 34(10), 1396–1405.

Griffin D.W., Bartholomew K. Models of the self and other: Fundamental dimensions underlying measures of adult attachment. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 1994, 67(3), 430–445.

Hinde R.A., Stevenson-Hinde J. Attachment: Biological, cultural and individual desiderata. Human Development, 1990, 33(1), 62–72.

Hudson N.W., Fraley R.C., Chopik W.J., Heffernan M.E. Not all attachment relationships develop alike: Normative cross-sectional age trajectories in attachment to romantic partners, best friends, and parents. Journal of Research in Personality, 2015, Vol. 59, 44–55.

Klohnen E.C., Bera S. Behavioral and experiential patterns of avoidantly and securely attached women across adulthood: A 31-year longitudinal perspective. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 1998, 74(1), 211–223.

MacDonald G. Marshall T.C., Gere J., Shimotomai A., Lies J. Valuing romantic relationships: The role of family approval across cultures. Cross-Cultural Research, 2012, 46(4), 366–393.

Marshall T.C. Love at the cultural crossroads: Intimacy and commitment in Chinese Canadian relationships. Personal Relationships, 2010, 17(3), 391–411.

Mikulincer M. Attachment style and the mental representation of the self. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 1995, 69(6), 1203–1215. doi:10.1037/0022-3514.69.6.1203

Mikulincer M., Ein-Dor T., Solomon Z., Shaver P.R. Trajectories of attachment insecurities over a 17-year period: A latent growth curve analysis of the impact of war captivity and posttraumatic stress disorder. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 2011, 30(9), 960–984.

Noftle E.E., Shaver P.R. Attachment dimensions and the big five personality traits: Associations and comparative ability to predict relationship quality. Journal of Research in Personality, 2006, 40(2), 179–208.

Sabelnikova N.V., Kashirskii D.V. Psikhologicheskii Zhurnal, 2015, 36(4), 84–97. (in Russian)

Schmitt D.P. Evolutionary perspectives on romantic attachment and culture: How ecological stressors influence dismissing orientations across genders and geographies. Cross-Cultural Research, 2008, 42(3), 220–247.

Shaver P.R., Brennan K.A. Attachment styles and the "Big Five" personality traits: Their connections with each other and with romantic relationship outcomes. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 1992, 18(5), 536–545.

Simpson J.A., Rholes W.S., Phillips D. Conflict in close relationships: An attachment perspective. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 1996, 71(5), 899–914.

Sroufe L.A. Attachment and development: A prospective, longitudinal study from birth to adulthood. Attachment and Human Development, 2005, 7(4), 349–367.

Terracciano A., McCrae R.R., Brant L.J., Costa Jr.P.T. Hierarchical linear modeling analyses of the NEO-PI-R scales in the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging. Psychology and Aging, 2005, 20(3), 493–367.

Van IJzendoorn M.H., Bakermans-Kranenburg M.J. Invariance of adult attachment across gender, age, culture, and socioeconomic status? Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 2010, 27(2), 200–208.

Waters E., Merrick S., Treboux D., Crowell J., Albersheim L. Attachment security in infancy and early adulthood: A twenty‐year longitudinal study. Child Development, 2000, 71(3), 684–689.

Woodhouse S., Ayers S., Field A.P. The relationship between adult attachment style and post-traumatic stress symptoms: A meta-analysis. Journal of Anxiety Disorders, 2015, Vol. 35, 103–117.

Zhang F., Labouvie-Vief G. Stability and fluctuation in adult attachment style over a 6-year period. Attachment and Human Development, 2004, 6(4), 419–437.

Received 6 November 2018. Date of publication: 26 February 2019.

About author

Ulybina Elena V.  Ph.D., Professor, Department of General Psychology, Institute of Social Sciences, Russian Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, pr. Vernadskogo, 84, 119571 Moscow, Russia.
E-mail: Этот адрес электронной почты защищен от спам-ботов. У вас должен быть включен JavaScript для просмотра. 

Suggested citation

Ulybina E.V. The contribution of age, the nature of relationships and material independence in measuring attachment in women. Psikhologicheskie Issledovaniya, 2018, Vol. 12, No. 63, p. 7. (in Russian, abstr. in English).

Permanent URL:

Back to top >>

Related Articles