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Examination of the precursors of infant attachment security: Implications for early intervention and intervention research. Enhancing infant attachment security: An examination of treatment efficacy and differential susceptibility. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Maternal warmth buffers the effects of low early-life socioeconomic status on proinflammatory signaling in adulthood.
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Touch attenuates infants' physiological reactivity to stress. A review of recent research. The handbook of touch: Neuroscience, behavioral, and health perspectives. Interpersonal and genetic origins of adult attachment styles: A longitudinal study from infancy to early adulthood. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.
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They asserted that frightening or frightened behavior in the parent—the hallmark of caregiving behaviors linked to disorganized behavior and increased risk for mental health disturbances in the child—stemmed from the parent's unresolved state of mind about her own traumatic childhood experiences.
Thus, an attachment-based understanding of young children's symptoms holds that frightening or frightened parental behavior is the mechanism responsible for transmitting from parent to child incoherent and contradictory states of mind regarding attachment.
These contradictory states of mind, in turn, are manifested in the child by disorganized behavior as the child attempts to resolve the paradox of fearing the person from whom protection is sought.
Lyons-Ruth and colleagues elaborated these ideas in a way that is particularly relevant to the child's direct exposure to traumatic events such as domestic violence. They propose a relationship diathesis model that focuses on the modulation of fear and places it in a relational context. In the relationship diathesis model, vulnerability to stress-related dysfunction is determined by at least three factors: Children's emotional and behavioral symptoms emerge when the stressor is too overwhelming or when the attachment relationship is unable to modulate the child's overwhelming affective response to the stressor.
The authors proposed that parents with unresolved fear dating back to childhood traumatic experiences have difficulty helping their children modulate strong emotions such as fear because the parents curtail their conscious attention to the child's fear signals in order to not reevoke their own early traumatic responses.
Fear signals left unattended are not modulated in the relationship, leaving children alone with their own unresolved traumatic experiences. Attachment theory thus predicts two explanations for young children's symptoms.
The second, explicated in the relationship diathesis model, predicts that the parent's own experiences of childhood trauma interfere with the parent's capacity to soothe the child in the face of present stress, leading to emotional and behavioral dysfunction in the child.
The relationship diathesis model provides a bridge to trauma theory, which offers its own explanation for children's symptoms after a stressful event.
Fagundes, in Advances in Child Development and Behavior , Attachment theory has provided a powerful and comprehensive model of the influence of intimate relationships on social and psychological functioning over the life course, and it is currently the preeminent theory underlying research on child—caregiver relationships and adult romantic relationships.
Yet research on adult attachment has developed and evolved quite separately from research on infant—child attachment, despite their common heritage in Bowlby's seminal work. To some extent, this can be attributed to straightforward disciplinary boundaries: Research on infant—child attachment is typically conducted by developmental psychologists, for whom the identification of adult manifestations of the parent—child processes they study may not be a primary topic of interest.
Research on adult attachment is typically conducted by social and personality psychologists, who may possess a basic familiarity with the purported developmental origins of attachment styles, but who are typically far more interested in probing their implications for adult functioning. Even the aforementioned longitudinal studies, which have followed individuals from infancy to adulthood, have focused on basic questions of continuity in attachment security from childhood to adulthood, and do not permit close investigation of developmental changes in attachment-related processes.
Perhaps the most vivid manifestation of this blind spot in attachment research is the continued underinvestigation of attachment processes during adolescence rather than infancy, childhood, and adulthood. As reviewed by Allen and Land , adolescence is a critically important period of life from the lens of attachment theory.
Adolescents must also balance the normative developmental press for differentiation from parents with continued needs for parental support and assistance, especially in light of the increasingly complex social, emotional, and psychological challenges that accompany this stage of life. Finally, adolescents' increasing interest and participation in romantic and sexual relationships lays the groundwork for the signature developmental transformation in the attachment system: We propose that the best way to integrate the growing body of research on adolescent attachment processes with the existing infant-child and adult traditions is to focus more systematically on the affect- and emotion-regulation functions of attachment.
Affect and emotion regulation are critically implicated in both the normative and individual difference components of attachment theory , and have been found to mediate and moderate attachment processes in both adulthood and infancy-childhood. In the next section, we provide an overview of affect and emotion regulation and their associations with attachment processes.
We show that at all stages of life, affect and emotion regulation remain primary functions of the attachment system, although the specific processes through which they are effected change over time. We then turn to our own research on linkages among attachment, affect regulation, and well-being during early adolescence.
Over time, experiences and expectations established in these early attachment relationships become guidelines for how information about important relationships established and maintained across the lifespan is to be encoded, processed, interpreted, stored in memory, and acted on e. Attachment theory describes a biological system with a survival function that is activated under pressure, separation, and danger Bowlby, An activated attachment system elicits attachment behavior in children approaching, seeking contact, and maintaining contact , which in turn leads to caregiving behavior by adults.
Repeated sequences of attachment signals and corresponding caregiving behavior are internalized and later on become mentally accessible. Internalized attachment experiences called IWMs of attachment serve as generalized expectations and organizing intrapsychic structures.
Therefore, attachment experiences develop into psychic structures with lifelong consequences. If caregivers primarily act sensitively with responsive availability, the child will most likely internalize the experience that his or her need for protection and comfort has been adequately satisfied secure IWM. Some children experience that their attachment signals are not or not adequately answered by their caregivers. This can lead to a reduced attachment signal insecure—avoidant IWM or attachment behavior that is ambivalent insecure—ambivalent IWM due to an insecurity about the availability of the caregiver Bowlby, Furthermore, a secure IWM entails unconscious beliefs that, in principle, the individual is capable to create a feeling of safety in different social contexts, either intrapsychic or interpersonal.
Therefore, securely attached individuals have a high flexibility in social interactions, whereas insecure IWMs lead to rigid interpersonal behavior. If strategies to deal with attachment-related stress fail because the attachment figure itself acts as the source of fear e.
A breakdown of regulation strategies can be observed in infants and has been described as disorganized attachment or unresolved trauma in adults, respectively. Attachment theory , specifically as it applies to adolescence and early adulthood, can also provide a useful framework from which to consider the transition to adulthood for individuals with ASD and their families. Attachment theory has become one of the most prominent ways to describe parent—child relationships, particularly during infancy and early childhood.
This bond can vary in quality, contingent on the quality of care that the child has received Ainsworth et al. Bowlby began his journey to attachment theory through research he conducted on child delinquents and hospitalized children.
Bowlby believed that children have an innate need to develop a close relationship with one main figure, usually the mother. When this does not occur, it has negative consequences on development, causing a decline in intelligence, depression, aggression, delinquency, and affectionless psychopathy a situation in which one is not concerned about the feelings of others . Following the above conclusions regarding maternal deprivation, Bowlby sought to develop a theory which would support and explain his results.
He felt that existing theories on attachment from psychoanalytic and behavioral fields were detached from reality and not up to date, thus he began reading into and corresponding with current researchers in the fields of biology and ethology. These results stand in contrast to classic approaches to attachment which believed that the goal of attachment was the fulfillment of needs, particularly feeding.
Newborn infants know to act in such a way that attracts adults, such as crying, smiling, cooing, and making eye contact. Although not attached to their mothers yet, they are soothed by the presence of others. Attachment in making 6 weeks- 6 to 8 months: Infants begins to develop a sense of trust in their mothers, in that they can depend on her in times of need.
They are soothed more quickly by their mother, and smile more often next to her.
Prospective research is needed examining the extent to which adult attachment styles predict both parenting behaviors and infant attachment (see Mayseless, Sharabany, & Sagi, , and Volling, Notaro, & Larsen, , for mixed evidence concerning parents' adult attachment style as a predictor of infant attachment).
The attachment behavior system is an important concept in attachment theory because it provides the conceptual linkage between ethological models of human development and modern theories on emotion regulation and personality.
For example, the research influenced the theoretical work of John Bowlby, the most important psychologist in attachment theory. It could also be seen a vital in convincing people about the importance of emotional care in . Attachment theory is centered on the emotional bonds between people and suggests that our earliest attachments can leave a lasting mark on our lives.
Attachment theory and research: Resurrection of the psychodynamic approach to personality Basic concepts in attachment theory and researchAccording to Bowlby for empirically examining such propositions and producing a solid body of empirical evidence that contributes to a resurrection of the psychodynamic approach to personality. Attachment Theory (Bowlby) 2 years ago • Child Development Theories, Learning Theories & Models • 1 Summary: Attachment theory emphasizes the importance of a secure and trusting mother-infant bond on development and well-being.