A cross-cultural study on attachment and adjustment difficulties in adolescence: The mediating role of self-control in Italy, Spain, China, and Poland

Elisa MANCINELLI, Hanna D. LIBERSKA, Jianbin LI, José P. ESPADA, Elisa DELVECCHIO, Claudia MAZZESCHI, Adriana LIS, Silvia SALCUNI

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1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

From a socio-ecological perspective, individuals are influenced by the interplay of individual, relational, and societal factors operating as a broader system. Thereby, to support youth adjustment during the critical adolescence period, the interplay between these factors should be investigated. This study aimed to investigate cross-cultural differences in adolescents’ maternal and paternal attachment, adolescents’ adjustment difficulties and self-control, and in their association. N = 1000 adolescents (mean (M) age = 16.94, SD = 0.48; 45.90% males) from China, Italy, Spain, and Poland participated by completing self-report measures. Results showed cross-country similarities and differences among the considered variables and their associative pattern. Moreover, conditional process analysis evaluating the association between maternal vs. paternal attachment and adjustment difficulties, mediated by self-control, and moderated by country, was performed. Maternal attachment directly, and indirectly through greater self-control, influenced adjustment difficulties in all four countries. This association was stronger among Spaniards. Paternal attachment influenced directly, and indirectly through self-control, on adolescents’ adjustment difficulties only in Italy, Spain, and Poland, and was stronger among Polish adolescents. For Chinese adolescents, paternal attachment solely associated with adjustment difficulties when mediated by self-control. Thus, results highlighted both similarities and differences across countries in the interplay between maternal vs. paternal attachment and self-control on adolescents’ adjustment difficulties. Implications are discussed. Copyright © 2021 by the authors.
Original languageEnglish
Article number8827
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume18
Issue number16
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2021

Citation

Mancinelli, E., Liberska, H. D., Li, J.-B., Espada, J. P., Delvecchio, E., Mazzeschi, C., . . . Salcuni, S. (2021). A cross-cultural study on attachment and adjustment difficulties in adolescence: The mediating role of self-control in Italy, Spain, China, and Poland. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 18(16). Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18168827

Keywords

  • Attachment
  • Self-control
  • Adjustment difficulties
  • Adolescence
  • Cultural differences

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