Honors Theses

Date of Award


Document Type

Undergraduate Thesis



First Advisor

Carrie V. Smith

Relational Format



Certain relational frameworks such as attachment, interpersonal goals, and parenting styles either found their roots in or have been studied in terms of the parent-child relationship. What often happens, however, is that researchers focus on how these constructs may affect child outcomes, without studying how they may impact the parents themselves. The current study sought to apply attachment and interpersonal goals in a parenting context, examine how they relate to the helicopter parenting style, and test all three constructs as predictors of parental need satisfaction. Parents of incoming college freshmen (N = 122) completed a survey comprised of the Experiences in Close Relationships-Relationship Structures scale, Helicopter Parenting scale, Basic Need Satisfaction in Relationships scale, and an adapted version of the Parenting Goals Questionnaire. Results reveal a significant correlational relationship between anxious attachment and self-image goals. Multiple regression analyses reveal insecure attachment and self-image goals to be significant predictors of helicopter parenting. Attachment insecurity, self-image goals, and helicopter parenting are all significant predictors of parental need satisfaction. Implications for future parent-focused research are discussed.

Included in

Psychology Commons



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