Contemporary Family Therapy

, Volume 34, Issue 3, pp 416–428 | Cite as

Exploring the Impact of Attachment Anxiety and Avoidance on the Perception of Couple Conflict

  • Nathan D. Wood
  • Ronald J. Werner-Wilson
  • Trent S. Parker
  • Martha S. Perry
Original Paper


Attachment anxiety and avoidance have been shown to affect how an individual processes social information such as facial expressions. Previous work has not explored perception of couple relationships. The current study had 39 individuals observe images and videos of couples in conflict. Results suggest that individuals with higher attachment anxiety perceived more intensity in negative interactions/affect and less positive interactions/affect in the couples they observed. Implications for therapy, clinical supervision, and family life education are discussed.


Attachment behavior Couples Perceptual style Observers 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nathan D. Wood
    • 1
  • Ronald J. Werner-Wilson
    • 1
  • Trent S. Parker
    • 1
  • Martha S. Perry
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Family SciencesUniversity of KentuckyLexingtonUSA

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