LITERATURE REVIEW OFTEN RESEARCH STUDIESIS THERE A CONNECTION BETWEEN ATTACHMENT DISORDERS AND PSYCHOPATHY?
DEFINITIONSPsychopathy: “a personality disorder characterized by a constellation of traits including interpersonal affective features and antisocial features” (Gao, Raine, Chan, Venables, & Mednick, 2010).Attachment Disorder: Demonstrated by an inability to have close relationships.
Definitions continuedReflective Functioning: An ability to see and think about mental states in oneself and others (Bouchard, et al. 2008).
Research Study #1by Becker-Weidman, 2009Effects of Early Maltreatment onDevelopment: A Descriptive Studyusing the Vineland Adaptive Scales II
Effects of Early Maltreatment on DevelopmentDetermined that adopted andfoster children showed a loweraverage developmental age (4.4years vs actual average age of 9.9years), and that there is a higherprevalence of Posttraumatic StressDisorder with this population
Challenges with this StudySmall sample sizeParticipants already identified as at-riskResults gained from self-reports
Research Study #2Abrams, Rifkin, & Hesse, 2009. Examining the Rule of Parental Frightened/Frightening Subtypes in Predicting Disorganized Attachment within a Brief Observational Procedure.
Examining the Role of Parental Frightened/Frightening Subtypes in Predicting Disorganized AttachmentShowed that dissociativeproblems among mothershave children with a higherlevel of disorganizationalattachment.
Challenges with this StudyParticipants were psychology studentsSample made up of mostly CaucasiansResults from self-reports
Research Study #3 Bouchard, et al. 2008 Mentalization in Adult Attachment Narratives: Reflective Functioning,Mental States, and Affect Elaboration Compared
Mentalization in Adult Attachment NarrativesProved that mothers withlow reflective functioninghad a correlation withchildren with Axis I and AxisII diagnoses.
Challenges with this StudySmall sample sizeParticipants identified as at-riskParticipants were psychology studentsSample largely CaucasianResults from self-reports
Research Study #4 Doron, Moulding, Kyrios,Nedeljkovik, Mikulincer, 2009 Adult Attachment Insecurities are Related to Obsessive Compulsive Phenomena
Adult Attachment InsecuritiesDemonstrated that there is acorrelation betweenObsessive CompulsiveDisorder and avoidant andanxious attachment styles.
Challenges with the StudyParticipants were psychology studentsSample largely CaucasianResults from self-reportsEarly attachment styles not measured
Research Study #5Gao, Raine, Chan, Venables, & Mednick, 2010Early Maternal and Paternal Bonding,Childhood Physical Abuse, and Adult Psychological Functioning
Early Maternal and Paternal BondingFound that psychopathyscores were higheramong those who hadexperienced a lack ofattachment.
Challenges with this StudyUnable to distinguish between genetic influences and social experiences.Results from self-reports
Research Study #6Johnson, Lui, & Cohen, 2011 Parenting Behaviours Associated with the Development of Adaptive and Maladaptive Offspring Personality Traits.
Parenting BehavioursDiscovered that paternalbonding is important inhealthy childrearing, andthat behavior modificationin parents leads to healthierchildren.
Challenges with this StudyResults from self-reportsFathers not directly interviewed, mothers provided the information required for the study.
Research Study #7Wei, Vogel, Tsun- Yao, & Zakalik, 2005 Adult Attachment, Affect Regulation, Negative Mood, and Interpersonal Problems: The Mediating Roles of Emotional Reactivity and Emotional Cutoff.
Adult Attachment, Affect Regulation, Negative Mood, and Interpersonal ProblemsAt-risk mothers have a lowerlevel of self-confidenceabout child-rearing, whichleads to depression in themother and poor bondingwith infants.
Challenges with this StudyResults from self-reportsFew participants from ethnic minority groupsParticipants were studentsMost participants were female
Research Study #8Wei, Heppner, Russell, & Young, 2008 Maladaptive Perfectionism and Ineffective Coping as Mediators between Attachment and Future Depression.
Maladaptive Perfectionism and Ineffective Coping as MediatorsExplored the possibility ofattachment styles beingmediating factors infuture mental healthchallenges.
Challenges with this StudyResults are from self-reportsParticipants young, Caucasian students
Research Study #9 Lopez & Hsu, 2002Further Validation of a Measure of Parent-Adult Attachment Style.
Further Validation of a Measure of Parent-Adult Attachment StyleWhile studying parent-adultattachment styles, these researchersfound that most had a healthyattachment style. Those who hadattachment difficulties with only oneparent, showed the same amount ofmaladaptive behavior as those whohad difficulties with both parents.
Challenges with this StudyResults from self-reportsGender imbalanceParticipants were students from a single collegeStudents from divorced/separated families were overrepresentedSmall sample size
Research Study #10Mikulincer, Ein-Dor, Solomon & Shaver, 2011Trajectories of Attachment Insecurities over a 17-Year Period: A Latent Growth CurveAnalysis of the Impact of War Captivity and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder.
Trajectories of AttachmentThis study researched the effects onprisoners of war and attachment styleand posttraumatic stress disorder. Thecontrol group was made up of thosesoldiers who had not been captured.The POWs showed an increaseddisturbance of attachment styles andPTSD.
Challenges with this StudyResults from self-reportsResults were not taken either before or immediately after war
Future Research OpportunitiesUse larger, more diverse samplingsResearch specific definition of Attachment DisordersDiscern specific causes of Attachment DisordersDevelop observational testing to back up self- reportsResearch those who are not already at-risk