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Title: Homelessness : associations between childhood adversity, attachment, impulsivity and maladaptive behaviours
Author: Smith, Stephanie A.
Awarding Body: University of Southampton
Current Institution: University of Southampton
Date of Award: 2018
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There are two sections to this thesis submission. The first is a systematic review exploring attachment styles within the homeless population and the role these play in the development of a variety of maladaptive behaviours. Following an extensive search of the literature, a total of 10 papers met inclusion criteria and underwent quality assessment and review. Whilst measures used to assess attachment and maladaptive behaviour varied greatly, high rates of insecure attachment and maladaptive behaviours were found within this population. Furthermore, the results suggest a significant relationship between insecure attachment and maladaptive behaviours, namely substance abuse, aggression and suicidal ideation. However, given the current paucity of papers within this field, the need for future research is discussed. The second section sought to further investigate the prevalence of insecure attachment within the homeless population and explore its relationship with factors implicated in the development of homelessness, namely childhood adversity and impulsivity. Using a cross-sectional design, eighty-three homeless adults were recruited and completed self-report measures of childhood adversity, attachment and impulsivity. As anticipated, predicted associations were found between childhood adversity and insecure attachment, namely insecure-anxious and disorganised. However, such associations were not found for insecure-avoidant attachment. Furthermore, whilst an association was found between insecure-avoidant attachment and impulsivity, no significant associations were found between impulsivity and childhood adversity nor either of the other insecure attachment styles. Clinical implications and suggestions for future research are discussed in light of these findings.
Supervisor: Maguire, Nicholas Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available