Differences in one's own and one's partner's perceptions of social skills as a function of attachment style

Laura K. Guerrero, Susanne M. Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations

Abstract

Two studies focused on attachment‐style differences in people's social skills. Study 1 had a sample of 237 students who completed questionnaires assessing their own attachment styles and social skills (based on Riggio's six dimensions of social skill). Study 2, which focused on partner‐reports, used data from 258 couples to determine whether people's perceptions of a partner's social skill would vary based on the partner's self‐reported attachment style. The results revealed attachment‐style differences in various social skills across self‐and partner‐reports; however, these differences were generally less robust for partner‐reports. Differences in self‐reported social skill were consistent with Bartholomew's two‐factor conceptualization of attachment. Dismissive and fearful individuals rated themselves as relatively antisocial and unexpressive, in line with their negative models of others; preoccupied and fearful individuals rated themselves as overly sensitive, in line with their negative models of self. Preoccupied individuals were also perceived as the most socially sensitive by their partners, and across all the analyses, secures were ostensibly the most socially skilled.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)277-295
Number of pages19
JournalCommunication Quarterly
Volume51
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2003

Keywords

  • Attachment
  • Communication
  • Emotion
  • Expressiveness
  • Sensitivity
  • Social skills

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