Term of Award


Degree Name

Master of Psychology

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (restricted to Georgia Southern)


Department of Psychology

Committee Chair

Janice Kennedy

Committee Member 1

William McIntosh

Committee Member 2

Martha Womack


The relationship between attachment style and ruminative thought processes was investigated. It was predicted that of the four attachment styles (e.g., secure, preoccupied, fearful, and dismissive) identified by Bartholomew and Horowitz (1991), preoccupieds would report higher rumination scores than any of the other attachment styles. Preoccupieds were also expected to report low self-esteem levels, high depressive affect and high linking scores. Secures were predicted to have high self-esteem levels and low rumination, depressive affect, and linking scores. To test these predictions, a 2 (Current relationship vs. no current relationship) x 2 (Gender) x 4 (Attachment style) between-subjects design was used to examine the effects of these variables on rumination, self-esteem, depressive affect, and linking. Preoccupieds reported high rumination, depressive affect, and linking scores and low self-esteem levels. Secures reported high self-esteem levels and low rumination, depressive affect, and linking scores. These findings provide evidence for a relationship between attachment theory and theories of rumination.


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