First Advisor

Johnson, Brian D.

Document Type


Date Created



Given the prevalence of bullying during youth and the substantial negative outcomes of these experiences during adulthood, this study evaluated youth bullying experiences, perceived parenting style, and emerging adult attachment styles. The purpose was to determine the extent to which perceived parenting style moderates the relationship between youth bullying experience and emerging adult attachment to primary caregivers, romantic partners, and best friends above and beyond what youth bullying experience already predicts. The interaction between youth bullying experience and perceived parenting style were hypothesized to account for a significant amount of the variance in the outcome of emerging adult attachment style. The study had 139 participants (ages 18-25) who completed an online survey. Hierarchical multiple linear regression analyses were conducted and the results found significance in the relationships between youth bullying and emerging adult attachment to parents and romantic partners. While a significant interaction effect was seen supporting the hypothesis in relation to primary caregivers, none was seen in regard to romantic partners or best friends. Results indicated the highest prevalence of participants were both a bully and a victim (57.6%) and authoritative parenting styles in childhood were associated with significantly more secure adult attachments. Implications and future research are discussed.


201 pages

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