attachment -cont___d_


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attachment -cont___d_

  1. 1. Attachment (cont’d)
  2. 2. The Motherly Influence… <ul><li>The mothers of each four types of infants from the Strange Situation test also behaved differently from one another. </li></ul><ul><li>Mothers of secure infants = loving, warm, sensitive to needs, responsive to communication attempts </li></ul><ul><li>Mothers of avoidant were unresponsive, insensitive and coldly rejecting </li></ul><ul><li>Mothers of ambivalent were inconsistent and insensitive to baby’s actions. </li></ul><ul><li>Mothers of disorganised/disorientated = abusive or neglectful in interactions with the infants </li></ul>
  3. 3. Implications <ul><li>Attachment theory applicable to all close social relationships across the lifespan. </li></ul>
  4. 4. The development of attachment styles across the lifespan Tries to avoid emotional dependence, deny own attachment needs and needs of others. Difficult to develop intimate relationships Do not seek comfort from their caregiver Avoidant Fear abandonment, often distrust partners’ availability and commitment, jealous and preoccupied with emotional closeness After separation and on reunion, approach caregiver for comfort, but also display anger and resistance to comfort Anxious-ambivalent Show trust in reliability of partners. Easy to depend and be depended on by others After separation and on reunion, infants approach caregiver for comfort and support Secure Adulthood Infancy Attachment style
  5. 5. Research <ul><li>Lopez and Gormley (2002) found ‘secure’ adults consistently experience less distress and more adaptive functioning </li></ul><ul><li>Butzer and Campbell (2008) interviewed 116 married couples (21-75yrs) and found participants with higher levels of ambivalent and avoidant attachment reported lower levels of sexual satisfaction </li></ul>
  6. 6. Therefore… <ul><li>Couple education that includes strategies to increase secure attachment and reduce ambivalent attachment needs to be targeted and implemented. </li></ul>
  7. 7. Harlow and Contact Comfort <ul><li>First assumed attachment to the mother occur from associations with hunger and thirst satisfaction. </li></ul><ul><li>That is: the mother is a secondary reinforcer. </li></ul><ul><li>Harry Harlow (1958) conducted studies with monkeys to show that attachment was influenced by more than just provision of food. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Contact Comfort Experiment <ul><li>Isolated eight baby Rhesus monkeys shortly after birth </li></ul><ul><li>Placed each in a cage with two surrogate ‘mothers’ </li></ul><ul><li>Mother 1 = block of wood covered in soft padding and terry cloth </li></ul><ul><li>Mother 2 = wire form </li></ul><ul><li>Both heated from within. </li></ul><ul><li>For half, Mother 1 held bottle; for other half, Mother 2 held the bottle </li></ul><ul><li>Harlow recorded time spent with each ‘mother’ </li></ul>
  9. 11. Results <ul><li>All monkeys spent more time with soft surrogate. </li></ul><ul><li>Concluded that “contact comfort was an important basic affectional or love variable” (Harlow, 1958) </li></ul><ul><li>Shows importance of touch in attachment process </li></ul>
  10. 12. What about the father? <ul><li>Attached to father about the same time </li></ul><ul><li>Strength of attachment influenced by amount of caregiving provided. i.e correlation between strength and diapers (1975)! </li></ul><ul><li>Tend to play more physical games </li></ul>
  11. 13. The Unattached Child <ul><li>Far more serious than losing a person to whom one is attached is never to have been attached to anyone. i.e. in institutions, child abuse </li></ul><ul><li>Likely to be near average intellectual ability, but abnormal social and emotional development </li></ul><ul><li>Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) </li></ul><ul><li>Difficulty to form relationships with adults or children. </li></ul><ul><li>Infancy and toddlerhood are crucial times for attachment formation. </li></ul>