Research of over the course 30 years showed that infants are far more competent, social, and responsive and are able to make sense of their environment. Infants are no longer regarded as passive and do not only respond to stimuli (Fantz, 1963). The theory of attachment that was first proposed by John Bowlby (1970) described it as a ‘lasting psychological connectedness between human beings’. He notion that children as young as infant need to develop a secure attachment with their main caregiver. Bowlby’s attachment theories are both psychopathology and normal socio-emotional development.
As original attachment theory suggests, desirable behavior is associated with security and undesirable behavior is associated with insecurity by mothers. Also consistent with attachment theory, mothers believed that socially desirability of children was related to responsiveness of their mothers (Rothbaum, et al., 2007). On the other hand, there were found some differences between Japan and U.S. cultures. Rothbaum et al. (2007) stated that “When describing the child with desirable characteristics… United States mothers focused on a much greater range of attributes-involving personality, social skills, character, and a host of specific traits- than did Japanese.” (p. 481).
CHAPTER III THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK This study focused on the Attachment theory in which it is stated how attachment is a deep and enduring emotional bond that connects one person to another across time and space (Ainsworth, 1973; Bowlby, 1969). Attachment theory is a theory that’s connected to psychology, studied first by John Bowlby. It explains the relevance of getting attached to something in an individual’s development. It is observed among children relying on their parents for stability, and that there is an existing need for them due to such reliance. The attachment theory is most commonly observed in the parent- child scenario, as it is in Bowlby’s study which regarded the existence of the attachment as a child needing some sort of person to give them a security and assurance.
In order for a human being to have a successful social life in later years, it is of the utmost importance that emotional bonds act as building blocks for development. After some research in his early works Bowlby found some theories suggesting that "attachment was only a behavioural pattern that is picked up during the progression of growing up and developing in the early months of life, and that it was basically due to a feeding relationship between the young child and the mother/caregiver". However, it became apparent to Bowlby that even feedings did not stop the anxiety children go through when they were separated from their mother/caregivers. Instead, he found that attachment was characterized by clear behavioural and motivation patterns. When children feel fearful or detect danger, they will automatically look for comfort and care from their primary caregiver.
According to Ainsworth, “attachment refers to an affectional tie that one person forms to another specific individual… attachment is thus discriminating and specific” (Salande & Hawkins, 2016). Without an attachment to an adult, a child has no guidance or direction in life. Therefore, if a child grows up in an unstable family structure, this child is more likely to develop an insecure attachment style in adulthood. Attachment theory confirms the importance of human relationships and their consequences for individual development (Schneider, 1991). As one continues to grow into an adult, it is important to have one to look up to for guidance, no matter what the situation may be.
(Carpenter and Huffman, 2013 p.278) In her studies of infants, she placed the mother in a room with the child (securely attached), then introduced a stranger to the child(anxious/ambivalent), then the mother would leave the room leaving the stranger with the child(anxious/avoidant), then mother would return (disorganized/disoriented attachment). Observations of the child's reactions towards the mother and stranger in each of these segments were analyzed. From this, Ainsworth was able to conclude the bonding the child had toward their mother. The more attached the child, the more they responded to the mother coming and going, either by clinging, crying or following. This research gives to wonder, are we doing harm when sending our young children to the sitter or school expecting them to act like they don't care when we leave?
Attachment plays a crucial role in the development of young children, and the social skills of children as they grow into adulthood. Looking at attachment from a low socioeconomic stand point reveled many interesting trends within individual’s attachment styles. It was made very clear to me throughout my research on this topic just how vital attachment is for individual development. The attachment theory came about as Mary Ainsworth and Jong Bowlby were researching young motherless children in a hospital after world war 2. They realized what negative effects this motherless environment enacted and wanted to further understand.
In observing the timeline, the events depicted shows the development of Attachment Theory from its early influence until the collaboration by John Bowlby and Mary Ainsworth (nee Salter). This theory was formulated by John Bowlby and then with further input it was elaborated by Mary Ainsworth. It seems as if this theory has originated from a base on ethological theories, the study of animal and human as they evolved; psychoanalytic perspective where the mother-child relationship was analyzed and; cognitive where the self and others are examined. Mary Main an American who is a psychologist and a professor, has taken attachment theory into a new direction by applying it to adults. She was a student of Mary Ainsworth, and whilst working with her
Attachment in early life is a fundamental aspect of child development and the establishment of intimate and reciprocal relationships with caregivers. Shaffer & Kipp (2007) define attachment as ‘a close emotional relationship between two persons, characterized by mutual affection and a desire to maintain proximity’. Contrary to the original view of infant attachment as a ‘secondary drive’ of the dependency on caregivers for physiological needs, such as hunger; Bowlby (1969, 1973) proposed that all infants are born with an innate bias to form an attachment to a primary attachment figure to whom they can seek comfort, or a ‘secure base’ during stressful circumstances. It is proposed by Ainsworth (1967) that parental sensitivity is crucial to shaping the security and development of the initial infant-parent attachment relationship, however the phenomenon of attachment requires both infants and caregivers to contribute in the formation of the attachment bond. Ultimately, the quality of attachment in early life shapes both the social and emotional
This will be supported with a reference to attachment theory. Attachment theory established an infant 's earliest relationship with their primary caregiver shaped their development and reflects on their self-esteem (Bowlby, 129), according to Bowlby, the development of attachment affected by the relationship with the caregiver in early age (birth to age 6 weeks), and then the child grows older and begin to understand his parent 's feelings. Also, he needs to develop a relationship with at least one primary caregiver for the child 's successful social, psychological, and emotional development. In insecure or avoidant attachment the infant is "indifferent and seems to avoid the mother or the primary caregiver, they are as