These results are consistent with the results of other studies in which the percentage distribution of the occurrence of the secure DIG-11-dUTP in people addicted to alcohol varies from 5.4 to 40%, while insecure attachment styles vary from 66 to 94.6% [21, 23, 24, 35]. Studies have also shown that among addicts variables such as the avoidance of closeness and fear of intimacy assume much higher values than in patients without addiction . It seems therefore, that the occurrence of insecure attachment styles and dimensions of such intensity (that indicates feelings of mistrust in interpersonal relationships) is prevalent in patients with alcohol dependence. In addition, there are also a number of studies conducted in non-clinical groups, especially among adolescents and students, which show that the presence of insecure attachment styles and high levels of anxiety and avoidance attachment dimensions is associated with alcohol abuse and experiencing serious consequences of drinking [29, 36, 37].
However, when analysing the relationship between alcohol dependence and individual insecure patterns of attachment, there are some discrepancies in the literature, mainly consisting of the fact that the importance of this relationship concerns either the avoidant attachment style only, or only the anxious-ambivalent style, or both styles [27, 38]. On the one hand, this is because of methodological differences, including the use of various scale test patterns to distinguish the attachment and the utilisation of three or four category patterns. Moreover, the available studies often include groups dependent on different psychoactive substances without division into subgroups dependent on individual substances, which in accordance with the concept that there is a phenomenon of preferences of substances depending on the patient\’s comorbid psychopathology [14, 39] appears to be a simplification and perhaps contributing to the confusion resulting from these studies. On the other hand, the researchers admit that this variation in the results for individual styles of attachment occurring in addicts is still unclear and requires further study [27, 28, 38]. In the dimensions of attachment studies tend to be a bit more consistent, but those that emphasise the importance of the relationship between alcohol dependence and one dimension of attachment can also be found . The results of our study show that in the group of alcohol dependent persons two insecure attachment styles as well as strengthening of both attachment dimensions, unfavourable for building interpersonal relationships, occur significantly more often. These results are comparable with other studies [24, 35, 40].
According to the initial assumptions, differences in the styles and dimensions of attachment were also found in alcohol dependent men and women compared to non-dependent persons. Both men and women dependent on alcohol exhibit difficulties in establishing secure, trusting interpersonal relationships and at the same time have an increased tendency to feel anxiety and fear about the stability of the relationship, resulting from the lack of a sense of security and/or actively avoiding forming close, intimate relationships. These results are comparable with other studies , although there is very little research which takes into account the gender of persons addicted to alcohol. The results of those available are also inconsistent; some of them emphasise the existence of relationships between insecure attachment styles and unfavourable attachment dimensions in men and no association or an association to a limited extent in women [27, 29]. In the context of this study the only variable differentiating attachment styles in alcohol dependent men and women is anxiety; men addicted to alcohol tend to exhibit greater anxiety about being rejected, although it is worth noting that the strength of the correlation is weak. Taking into account the fact that in women more often than in men the understanding of alcohol dependence is based on a model for reducing stress and anxiety, and the concept of self-medication , the results of greater attachment anxiety among dependent men seem to be surprising and require further verification. Similarly, the results indicating the ambiguous relationship between the variables of attachment and gender in the group of addicts require further verification. The results obtained indicate differences between dependent men and women, but these groups are differentiated to a low degree. It seems that results obtained by the authors of the study, showing similar trends occurring in men and women suggest a certain universality of such theoretical assumptions. On the other hand, the results of other studies, as well as a small number of subjects in this study, require one to be cautious about these results.