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Narcissism and Attachment

The Importance of Early Parenting

Cramer, Phebe, PhD

The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease: February 2019 - Volume 207 - Issue 2 - p 69–75
doi: 10.1097/NMD.0000000000000919
Original Articles

Research often shows that narcissism and attachment style are related. The present research examines the question of whether early parenting style contributes to adult attachment style, beyond the relation between narcissism and attachment. Parents reported on their parenting style at age 3, and offspring were assessed for attachment style and narcissism at age 23. The results indicated that early parenting style was not directly related to narcissism, but along with narcissism added to the prediction of attachment style. In combination with vulnerable narcissism, authoritarian parenting was positively related to secure attachment, and negatively related to preoccupied attachment, whereas permissive and responsive parenting were negatively related to secure attachment and positively related to preoccupied attachment.

Department of Psychology, Williams College, Williamstown, Massachusetts.

Send reprint requests to Phebe Cramer, PhD, Department of Psychology, Williams College, 18 Hoxsey Street, Williamstown, MA 01267. E-mail:

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