The Relationship Between Attachment Style, Mental Health and Coping Strategies in Irish Farming.

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Cavanagh, Ultan
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BA (Hons) in Psychology
Dublin Business School
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The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between attachment styles, general mental health, and emotional and instrumental coping strategies in full-time Irish farmers. Participants (n = 81) were recruited by means of convenience and snowball methods via email and social media and were asked to complete an on-line questionnaire. The Revised Adult Attachment Scale (Collin, 1996) was used to measure 3 dimensions of attachment i.e. close, depend and anxious attachment. The General Health Questionnaire (Goldberg, 1992) measured levels of distress and the Brief COPE Questionnaire (Carver, 1997) measured emotional and instrumental coping strategies. Multiple regression analysis showed that farmers high on depend attachment had lower levels of distress and are more inclined to use emotional and instrumental coping strategies. Farmers high on anxious attachment had higher levels of distress. This study found that being comfortable depending on others is a protecting factor against psychological distress for farmers. Author Keywords: Attachment, mental health, coping strategies, farming, agriculture