Too close for comfort? Adult attachment and cuddling in romantic and parent-child relationships

William J. Chopik, Robin S. Edelstein, Sari M. van Anders, Britney Wardecker, Emily L. Shipman, Chelsea R. Samples-Steele

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Close physical contact is a defining feature of intimate relationships across the lifespan and occurs in nearly all kinds of close relationships. However, there are important individual differences in the extent to which people feel comfortable engaging in intimate interactions. In two samples, attachment avoidance was associated with less positive feelings toward cuddling in adult romantic relationships (Sample 1) and parent-child relationships (Sample 2); attachment anxiety was largely unrelated to feelings about cuddling across relationships. Moreover, the magnitude of the associations between attachment avoidance and feelings about cuddling was similar across relationship types. The current study highlights the similarities in people's use of intimate touch across relationships, namely to communicate affection, trust, and responsiveness to their loved ones. Yet we also identified important attachment-related differences in feelings about intimate touch. The current findings suggest several new directions for future research on the benefits of interpersonal touch.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)212-216
Number of pages5
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Volume69
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

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Parent-Child Relations
Emotions
Touch
Individuality
Anxiety

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Psychology(all)

Cite this

Chopik, William J. ; Edelstein, Robin S. ; van Anders, Sari M. ; Wardecker, Britney ; Shipman, Emily L. ; Samples-Steele, Chelsea R. / Too close for comfort? Adult attachment and cuddling in romantic and parent-child relationships. In: Personality and Individual Differences. 2014 ; Vol. 69. pp. 212-216.
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Too close for comfort? Adult attachment and cuddling in romantic and parent-child relationships. / Chopik, William J.; Edelstein, Robin S.; van Anders, Sari M.; Wardecker, Britney; Shipman, Emily L.; Samples-Steele, Chelsea R.

In: Personality and Individual Differences, Vol. 69, 01.01.2014, p. 212-216.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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