Attachment bowlby ainsworth


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Attachment bowlby ainsworth

  1. 1. Attachment Theories
  2. 2. Attachment Definition <ul><li>A strong emotional and social bond between infants and their caregivers </li></ul><ul><li>Very important development in the social and emotional life of the infant. </li></ul>
  3. 3. When does it form? <ul><li>Usually within the first six months of the infant’s life </li></ul><ul><li>Shows up in second six months through wariness of strangers, fear of separation from caregiver, etc. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Just the mother? <ul><li>No </li></ul><ul><li>Attachment to the mother is usually the primary attachment, but can attach to fathers and other caretakers as well. </li></ul>
  5. 5. John Bowlby (1969) <ul><li>Most influential theory </li></ul><ul><li>Believed it was normal (rather than pathological) to need other people throughout the life span </li></ul><ul><li>Argued both infants and parents are biologically predisposed to form attachments </li></ul><ul><li>Argued babies are born equipped with behaviours (crying, cooing, babbling, smiling, clinging, sucking, following) that help ensure that adults will love them, stay with them and meet their needs. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Bowlby (cont’d) <ul><li>Argued that adults are biologically programmed to respond to an infant’s signals. </li></ul><ul><li>Viewed first three years as a sensitive period for attachment </li></ul><ul><li>Believed the formation and security of attachment is influenced by ongoing interaction between infant and caregiver and by the ability of each partner to respond to the other’s signals. </li></ul>
  7. 7. Bowlby (cont’d) <ul><li>Believed quality of early attachment influences future relationships (friends, romantic partners, own children). </li></ul><ul><li>Internal working models – cognitive representations of themselves and other people, shaping their expectations about relationships </li></ul>
  8. 8. Four Stages of Attachment <ul><li>Pre-attachment (0-2 months): infants do not discriminate one person from another – no fear of strangers </li></ul><ul><li>Attachment-in-the-making (2-6 months): Infant directs signals to a particular person. Recognises their parents but do not protest when separated </li></ul><ul><li>Clear-cut attachment (6months – 3 or 4 years): Separation anxiety. Can be attached to several </li></ul><ul><li>Goal-corrected partnership (3-4 yrs onwards): understand caregiver’s schedule. Separation protests decline. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Summary of Bowlby <ul><li>Capacity to form attachment is evolutionary </li></ul><ul><li>Attachments unfold through interaction of biological and environmental forces during a sensitive period early in life </li></ul><ul><li>First attachment relationship shapes later development and quality of later relationships </li></ul><ul><li>Internal working models of self and others affects later development </li></ul>
  10. 10. Mary Ainsworth <ul><li>Ainsworth came up with a special experimental design to measure the attachment of an infant to the caretaker </li></ul><ul><li>The Strange Situation Test – procedure in which a caregiver leaves a child alone with a stranger for several minutes and then returns. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Four Key Observations: <ul><li>Exploration : to what extent does the child explore their environment throughout </li></ul><ul><li>Reaction to departure : what is the child’s response when the caregiver leaves </li></ul><ul><li>The stranger anxiety : how does the child respond to the stranger alone </li></ul><ul><li>Reunion : how does the child respond to the caregiver upon returning </li></ul>
  12. 12. Findings <ul><li>Infants differ in quality or style of their attachment to their caregivers. </li></ul><ul><li>Most show one of four distinct patterns of attachment: </li></ul><ul><li>Secure attachment </li></ul><ul><li>Insecure/Avoidant attachment </li></ul><ul><li>Insecure/ambivalent attachment </li></ul><ul><li>Disorganised/Disorientated attachment </li></ul>
  13. 13. Secure Attachment <ul><li>Most infants (65-70% of 1 yr olds) </li></ul><ul><li>Freely expore new environments, touching base with caregiver periodically for security. </li></ul><ul><li>May or may not cry when separated, when returned, crying ceases quickly. </li></ul>
  14. 14. Avoidant <ul><li>15% </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t cry when separated </li></ul><ul><li>React to stranger similar to their caregiver </li></ul><ul><li>When returned, avoids her or slow to greet her. </li></ul>
  15. 15. Ambivalent <ul><li>10% </li></ul><ul><li>Seeks contact with their caregiver before separation </li></ul><ul><li>After she leaves and returns, they first seek her, then resist or reject offers of comfort </li></ul>
  16. 16. Disorganised/Disoriented <ul><li>5-10% </li></ul><ul><li>Elements of both avoidant and ambivalent (confused) </li></ul>
  17. 17. Across cultures <ul><li>Differs </li></ul><ul><li>Reflects contrasting approaches to rearing </li></ul><ul><li>E.g. avoidant is relatively high in Germany, ambivalent in Japan </li></ul>