ABSTRACT

Interdisciplina ry Center ofMathematical and Experimental Psychology Research, Tte. Gral. Peron 2158, 1040 Buenos Aires, Argentina

This study examined : (I) the independence of children's attachments to mother and father; (2) the relationships between father and mother quality of attachment and children 's social and cognitive self-competence, depression and loneliness; and (3) differences in those relationships by gender. Spanish translations of standardised and self-report measures of mother and father attachment quality, scholastic and social competence, depression and loneliness were administered to 860 middle-class children, aged 8-12 in Buenos Aires, Argentina . Children's attachment security with mothers was only moderately related to their attachment security with fathers, suggesting that these two constructs were somewhat independent. In addition , mother security and father security were uniquely predictive of children's social-emotional outcomes . Availability of and reliance on father most strongly predicted lowered depression scores for children. There were differences in father and mother attachment dimensions and child outcomes by child gender , and these differences can be explained in part by cultural factors.