Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 23

attachment Related Abstracts

23 A ‘Just and Loving Gaze’ on Sexuality and Attachment: Why I Think (Not) All Homosexual Relationships are Borne Out of an Abandonment and Attachment Crisis

Authors: Victor Counted


John Bowlby's Attachment theory is often a framework used by many researchers to understand human relationship experiences with close 'others'. In this short brief on sexuality, I tried to discuss homosexual relationships from three attachment positions, or if you like, conditions, in relation to the compensation and correspondence hypothesis used to understand an individual's attachment orientation with an attachment figure who is seen as a secure base, safe haven, and some kind of target for proximity seeking. Drawing from the springs of virtue and hope in light of Murdock’s ‘just and love gaze’ model, I allowed myself to see the homosexual cases cited in positive terms, as I related to the situations and experiences of our homosexual ‘others’ from the guiding herald of Moltmann's theology of hope. This approach allowed me to conclusively convince readers to engage sexuality from a tolerating tendency of hope in our thinking and thoughts towards the actions and conditions of our dynamic world which is always plunging toward the future.

Keywords: Sexuality, Wellbeing, Homosexuality, attachment, abandonment, tolerance of hope, wise fool

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22 Sib-Care and Attachment in Zambia and the Netherlands

Authors: Haatembo Mooya


Cross-culturally, exclusive maternal care of infants is an exception, rather than a rule. In most traditional non-Western societies, child care is shared within the family while in most middle class Western societies parents tend to rely more on ‘hired hands’ for support. In both contexts however, a common caregiver is the sibling. Despite this, the phenomenon of sib-care has remained relatively understudied. Cultural and gender differences in sib-care and attachment were explored using a retrospective survey instrument comparing Zambian and Dutch college students. The total study sample (N = 394) comprised of 200 Zambian students from the University of Zambia and 194 Dutch students from Leiden University, the Netherlands. We tested four main hypotheses. Firstly, we hypothesized that the Zambian subjects performed more sib-care than Dutch subjects. Secondly we hypothesized that female participants performed more sib-care than males participants, both among the Zambian and Dutch subjects, especially when parents are not at home. Thirdly, we hypothesized that larger family size was associated with more sib-care. Finally, we hypothesized that securely attached participants performed more sib-care than their less securely attached peers. Results indicated that sib-care was prevalent in both Zambian and Dutch samples. Zambian subjects performed more sib-care than Dutch subjects, with females performing more sib-care than males, both when parents were at home (F(2, 244) = 62.09, p < .01) and when parents were not at home (F(2, 237) = 51.28, p < .01). We also found that family size and attachment related avoidance and anxiety were not significant predictors of sib-care. It is concluded that sib-care is understudied, not only in Africa but also in Western societies and that females perform more sib-care than males, especially when the parents are not at home. In addition, attachment related avoidance and anxiety appear to be more related to the quality than the quantity of sib-care provided.

Keywords: Africa, attachment, sibling, sib-care, Zambia, the Netherlands

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21 Complementary Child-Care by Grandparents: Comparisons of Zambia and the Netherlands

Authors: Francis Sichimba


Literature has increasingly acknowledged the important role that grandparents play in child care with evidence highlighting differences in grand-parental investment between countries and cultures. However, there are very few systematic cross cultural studies on grandparents’ participation in child care. Thus, we decided to conduct this study in Zambia and the Netherlands because the two countries differ rather drastically socially and culturally. The objective of this study was to investigate grand-parental involvement in child care in Zambia and the Netherlands. In line with the general objective, four hypotheses were formulated using nationality, family size, social economic status (SES), attachment security as independent variables. The study sample consisted of 411 undergraduate students from the University of Zambia and the University of Leiden. A questionnaire was used to measure grand-parental involvement in child care. Results indicated that grandparent involvement in child care was prevalent in both Zambia and Netherlands. However, as predicted it was found that Zambian grandparents (M = 9.69, SD=2.40) provided more care for their grandchildren compared to their Dutch counterparts (M = 7.80, SD=3.31) even after controlling for parents being alive. Using hierarchical logistic regression analysis the study revealed that nationality and attachment-related avoidance were significant predictors of grand-parental involvement in child care. It was concluded that grand-parental care is a great resource in offering complementary care in both countries.

Keywords: Care, attachment, grand-parenting involvement, social economic status

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20 Gender of the Infant and Interpersonal Relationship Correlates of Postpartum Depression among Women in Gilgit, Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan

Authors: Humaira Mujeeb, Farah Qadir


The present study aimed to explore the association between interpersonal relationship and postpartum depression with a special focus on gender of the infant among women in Gilgit, Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan. The research was quantitative in nature. It was a correlation study with a cross-sectional study design. The target population was women between six weeks to six months after the delivery of a baby. The sample size of 158 women has been computed by using G*Power (3.0.10 version). The sample was taken through quota sampling technique which was used to gather data according to the specifically predefined groups (79 women with female infants and 79 women with male infants). The sample was selected non-randomly according to the fixed quota. A protocol which had demographic and interpersonal relationship variables alongside with the Urdu version Edinburgh postnatal depression scale was used to collect the relevant data. The data was analyzed by using SPSS 16.0 software package. A statistically significant association between the attachment with husband in women who had a female infant and postpartum depression has been found. The association between the husband’s emotional and physical support in women who had a female infant and postpartum depression had also been found significant. In case of women with a male infant, the association between support of in-laws and postpartum depression is statistically significant. An association between the violence/discrimination based on the basis of infant's gender in women who had a female infant and postpartum depression is also found. These findings points out that when studying the correlates of postpartum depression, it is imperative to carry out an analysis in the context of gender by considering gender of the infant especially in societies where strict gender preferences exists.

Keywords: Gender, Violence, Pakistan, attachment, Discrimination, support, infant, husband, in-laws, Edinburgh postnatal depression scale, Gilgit

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19 Attachment and Self Esteem among Adolescents of Separated Parents

Authors: Aswathy Sampath


The study examined the levels of self esteem and attachment among adolescents of divorced and non-divorced parents. Adolescent is a period which is most prodigious yet stressful period of development in a human’s life hence it is important to study the effects on them. The study was conducted on total 60 adolescents, 30 in each group, from the area of Trivandrum, Kerala as it is the top rated in the number of divorce cases in India. The data was collected using Rosenberg’s self esteem scale and IPPA (father, mother and peer) The results of this study were analyzed using t test and found that there is no significance difference in the level of self esteem and attachment (father, mother and peer). This is due to the cultural elements that give support to the individual and also the type of family as it is much different from the west. Although, there was no significant result, there were higher mean scores in the attachment towards peer for children who are from separated family background or in other words adolescents whose parents were divorced. This tells us the essence of social support.

Keywords: separation, Adolescent, attachment, self esteem

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18 Attachment and Decision-Making in Infertility

Authors: Anisa Luli, Alessandra Santona


Wanting a child and experiencing the impossibility to conceive is a painful condition that often is linked to infertility and often leads infertile individuals to experience psychological, relational and social problems. In this situation, infertile couples have to review their choices and take into consideration new ones. Few studies have focused on the decision-making style used by infertile individuals to solve their problem and on the factors that influences it. The aim of this paper is to define the style of decision-making used by infertile persons to give a solution to the “problem” and the predictive role of the attachment, of the representations of the relationship with parents in childhood and of the dyadic adjustment. The total sample is composed by 251 participants, divided in two groups: the experimental group composed by 114 participants, 62 males and 52 females, age between 25 and 59 years, and the control group composed by 137 participants, 65 males and 72 females, age between 22 and 49 years. The battery of instruments comprises: General Decision Making Style (GDMS), Experiences in Close Relationships Questionnaire Revised (ECR-R), Dyadic Adjustment Scale (DAS), Parental Bonding Instrument (PBI) and Symptom Checklist-90-R (SCL-90-R). The results from the analysis of the samples showed a prevalence of the rational decision-making style for both males and females, experimental and control group. There have been founded significant statistical relationships between the attachment scales, the representations of the parenting style, the dyadic adjustment and the decision-making styles. These results contribute to enrich the literature on the subject of decision-making in infertile people and show the relationship between the attachment and decision-making styles, confirming the few results in literature.

Keywords: infertility, attachment, decision-making style, dyadic adjustment

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17 The Predictive Role of Attachment and Adjustment in the Decision-Making Process in Infertility

Authors: A. Luli, A. Santona


It is rare for individuals that are involved in a relationship to think about the possibility of having procreation problems in the near present or in the future. However, infertility is a condition that affects millions of people all around the world. Often, infertile individuals have to deal with experiences of psychological, relational and social problems. In these cases, they have to review their choices and take into consideration, if it is necessary, new ones. Different studies have examined the different decisions that infertile individuals have to go through dealing with infertility and its treatment, but none of them is focused on the decision-making style used by infertile individuals to solve their problem and on the factors that influences it. The aim of this paper is to define the style of decision-making used by infertile persons to give a solution to the ‘problem’ and the potential predictive role of the attachment and of the dyadic adjustment. The total sample is composed by 251 participants, divided in two groups: the experimental group composed by 114 participants, 62 males and 52 females, age between 25 and 59 years, and the control group composed by 137 participants, 65 males and 72 females, age between 22 and 49 years. The battery of instruments used is composed by: the General Decision Making Style (GDMS), the Experiences in Close Relationships Questionnaire Revised (ECR-R), Dyadic Adjustment Scale (DAS), and the Symptom Checklist-90-R (SCL-90-R). The results from the analysis of the samples showed a prevalence of the rational decision-making style for both males and females. No significant statistical difference was found between the experimental and control group. Also the analyses showed a significant statistical relationship between the decision making styles and the adult attachment styles for both males and females. In this case, only for males, there was a significant statistical difference between the experimental and the control group. Another significant statistical relationship was founded between the decision making styles and the adjustment scales for both males and females. Also in this case, the difference between the two groups was founded to be significant only of males. These results contribute to enrich the literature on the subject of decision-making styles in infertile individuals, showing also the predictive role of the attachment styles and the adjustment, confirming in this was the few results in the literature.

Keywords: infertility, attachment, adjustment, decision-making style

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16 The Mediating Role of Early Maladaptive Schemas in the Relationship between Attachment and Trait Anger and Anger Expression

Authors: Ayperi̇ Haspolat Özcan, Meltem Anafarta Şendağ


This study aimed to establish a model in the light of current approaches for understanding the mediating role of early maladaptive schemas in the relationship between attachment and anger. Accordingly, the proposed mediation model was tested by mediation with bootstrapping technique, considering gender and attachment figure differences. The university students (N= 444) with ages ranging from 17 to 28 participated in the study. Participants filled out Parental and Peer Attachment Scale Short Form, Young Schema Questionnaire - Short Form 3, Trait Anger and Anger Expression Scales. The mediating role of early maladaptive schemas (impaired autonomy, disconnection and rejection, unrelenting standards, other-directedness, and impaired limits) in the relationship between attachment (mother and father) and anger aspects (trait anger, anger in, anger out and anger control) were found to be significant for both male and female participants. Separate mediation analyses for both genders and different attachment figures have also drawn attention to noticeable differences in the results. Specifically, for females, various paths were discovered in predicting various aspects of anger (anger in, anger out, anger control, and trait anger). On the other hand, for males only anger directed inwards was found to be predicted by any source of attachment through disconnection and rejection schema only. These obvious gender differences in understanding the mechanism of anger are discussed in the light of cultural gender roles and the social acceptance of anger in males. In the area of application, the study of various aspects of anger with particular attention to attachment and early maladaptive schemas as well as the importance of distinguishing the gender differences are emphasized as important points.

Keywords: attachment, anger expression, early maladaptive schemas, trait anger

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15 Lifetime Attachment: Adult Daughters Attachment to Their Old Mothers

Authors: Meltem Anafarta Şendağ, Funda Kutlu


Attachment theory has some major postulates that direct attention of psychologists from many different domains. First, the theory suggests that attachment is a lifetime process. This means that every human being from cradle to grave needs someone stronger to depend on in times of stress. Second, the attachment is a dynamic process and as one goes through developmental stages it is being transferred from one figure to another (friends, romantic partners). Third, the quality of attachment relationships later in time directly affected by the earliest attachment relationship established between the mother and the infant. Depending on these postulates, attachment literature focuses mostly on mother – child attachment during childhood and romantic relationship during adulthood. However, although romantic partners are important attachment figures in adults’ life, parents are not dropped out from the attachment hierarchy but they keep being important attachment figures. Despite the fact that parents could still be an important figure in adults’ life, adult – parent attachment is overlooked in the literature. Accordingly, this study focuses on adult daughters’ current attachment to their old mothers in relation with early parental bonding and current attachment to husbands. Participants of the study were 383 adult women (Average age = 40, ranging between 23 and 70) whose mothers were still alive and who were married at the time of the study. Participants were completed Adult Attachment Scale, Parental Bonding Instrument, and Experiences in Close Relationship – II together with demographic questionnaire. Results revealed that daughters’ attachment to their mothers weakens as they get older, have more children, and have longer marriages. Stronger attachment to mothers was found positively correlated with current satisfaction with the relationship, perception of maternal care before the age of 12 and negatively correlated with perception of controlling behavior before the age 12. Considering the relationship between current parental attachment and romantic attachment, it was found that as the current attachment to mother strengthens attachment avoidance towards husband decreases. Results revealed that although attachment between the adult daughters and old mothers weakens, the relationship is still critical in daughters’ lives. The strength of current attachment with the mother is related both with the early relationship with the mother and current attachment with the husband. The current study is thought to contribute to attachment theory emphasizing the attachment as a lifetime construct.

Keywords: attachment, adult daughter, old mothers, parental bonding

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14 Mobile Communication Technologies, Romantic Attachment and Relationship Quality: An Exploration of Partner Attunement

Authors: Jodie Bradnam, Mark Edwards, Bruce Watt


Mobile technologies have emerged as tools to create and sustain social and romantic relationships. The integration of technologies in close relationships has been of particular research interest with findings supporting the positive role of mobile phones in nurturing feelings of closeness and connection. More recently, the use of text messaging to manage conflict has become a focus of research attention. Four hundred and eleven adults in committed romantic relationships completed a series of questionnaires measuring attachment orientation, relationship quality, texting frequencies, attitudes, and response expectations. Attachment orientation, relationship length, texting for connection and disconnection were significant predictors of relationship quality, specifically relationship intimacy. Text frequency varied as a function of attachment orientation, with high attachment anxiety associated with high texting frequencies and with low relationship quality. Sending text messages of love and support was related to higher intimacy and relationship satisfaction scores, while sending critical or impersonal texts was associated with significantly lower intimacy and relationship satisfaction scores. The use of texting to manage relational conflict was a stronger negative predictor of relationship satisfaction than was the use of texting to express love and affection. Consistent with research on face-to-face communication in couples, the expression of negative sentiments via text were related to lower relationship quality, and these negative sentiments had a stronger and more enduring impact on relationship quality than did the expression of positive sentiments. Attachment orientation, relationship length and relationship status emerged as variables of interest in understanding the use of mobile technologies in romantic relationships.

Keywords: Mobile Communication, attachment, relationship quality, intimacy, texting, destructive conflict, relationship satisfaction

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13 Adult Attachment Security as a Predictor of Career Decision-Making Self-Efficacy among College Students in the United States

Authors: Mai Kaneda, Sarah Feeney


This study examined the association between adult attachment security and career decision-making self-efficacy (CDMSE) among college students in the United States. Previous studies show that attachment security is associated with levels of CDMSE among college students. Given that a majority of studies examining career development variables have used parental attachment measures, this study adds to understanding of this phenomenon by utilizing a broader measure of attachment. The participants included 269 college students (76% female) between the ages of 19-29. An anonymous survey was distributed online via social media as well as in hard copy format in classrooms. Multiple regression analyses were conducted to determine the relationship between anxious and avoidant attachment and CDMSE. Results revealed anxious attachment was a significant predictor of CDMSE (B = -.13, p = .01), such that greater anxiety in attachment was associated with lower levels of CDMSE. When accounting for anxious attachment, avoidant attachment was no longer significant as a predictor of CDMSE (B = -.12, p = .10). The variance in college CDMSE explained by the model was 7%, F(2,267) = 9.51, p < .001. Results for anxious attachment are consistent with existing literature that finds insecure attachment to be related to lower levels of CDMSE, however the non-significant results for avoidant attachment as a predictor of CDMSE suggest not all types of attachment insecurity are equally related to CDMSE. Future research is needed to explore the nature of the relationship between different dimensions of attachment insecurity and CDMSE.

Keywords: attachment, Self-efficacy, college students, career decision-making

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12 The Consequences of Cyberbullying and School Violence: Risk and Protective Factors

Authors: Ifigenia Stylianou


As more than three-quarters of students going online daily via computers, tablets, and smartphones, the phenomenon of cyberbullying is growing rapidly. Knowing that victims of online bullying are often also victims of traditional bullying and that traditional bullying is considered as an extension of cyberbullying. In this study, we aim to identify (1) whether cyberbullying lead to more intense forms of school bullying, and (2) whether some biological and environmental factors mediate between this relation, and act protectively to bullying and inappropriate behaviour in school. To answer this questions, a sample of X students, aged X, were asked to complete eight questionnaires (Personal Experiences Checklist, Inventory of Peers Attachment, Questionnaire on Teacher Interaction, School Climate Survey for Bullying, Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire, Youth Psychopathic Traits Inventory-Short Form, Barratt Impulsiveness Scale-11) in X time periods. Results can provide us important information to improve understanding the factors that are related to bullying. In addition, the results can assist in developing intervention programs to tangle the issue of bullying at schools. All data have been collected and are currently being processed for statistical analyses.

Keywords: School Climate, Bullying, attachment, Cyberbullying, psychopathy traits, mediation factors

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11 Relationship Demise After Having Children: An Analysis of Abandonment and Nuclear Family Structure vs. Supportive Community Cultures

Authors: John W. Travis


There is an epidemic of couples separating after a child is born into a family, generally with the father leaving emotionally or physically in the first few years after birth. This separation creates high levels of stress for both parents, especially the primary parent, leaving her (or him) less available to the infant for healthy attachment and nurturing. The deterioration of the couple’s bond leaves parents increasingly under-resourced, and the dependent child in a compromised environment, with an increased likelihood of developing an attachment disorder. Objectives: To understand the dynamics of a couple, once the additional and extensive demands of a newborn are added to a nuclear family structure, and to identify effective ways to support all members of the family to thrive. Qualitative studies interviewed men, women, and couples after pregnancy and the early years as a family, regarding key destructive factors, as well as effective tools for the couple to retain a strong bond. In-depth analysis of a few cases, including the author’s own experience, reveal deeper insights about subtle factors, replicated in wider studies. Using a self-assessment survey, many fathers report feeling abandoned, due to the close bond of the mother-baby unit, and in turn, withdrawing themselves, leaving the mother without support and closeness to resource her for the baby. Fathers report various types of abandonment, from his partner to his mother, with whom he did not experience adequate connection as a child. The study identified a key destructive factor to be unrecognized wounding from childhood that was carried into the relationship. The study culminated in the naming of Male Postpartum Abandonment Syndrome (MPAS), describing the epidemic in industrialized cultures with the nuclear family as the primary configuration. A growing family system often collapses without a minimum number of adult caregivers per infant, approximately four per infant (3.87), which allows for proper healing and caretaking. In cases with no additional family or community beyond one or two parents, the layers of abandonment and trauma result in the deterioration of a couple’s relationship and ultimately the family structure. The solution includes engaging community in support of new families. The study identified (and recommends) specific resources to assist couples in recognizing and healing trauma and disconnection at multiple levels. Recommendations include wider awareness and availability of resources for healing childhood wounds and greater community-building efforts to support couples for the whole family to thrive.

Keywords: Community building, attachment, family and marital functioning, relationship quality, abandonment, intimacy, marital satisfaction, relationship satisfaction, healing childhood wounds, infant wellness

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10 A Case Study on Parent-Child Relationship, Attachment Styles, and Romantic Relationship Quality of Illegitimate Emerging Adults

Authors: Pierre Nicole Patriarca


This study examined the attachment styles, parent-child relationship, and romantic relationship quality of five illegitimate emerging adults aged 18 to 23 years old. The researcher used self-report measures, inventory of parent and peer attachment, attachment style questionnaire, and network of relationship – relationship quality version in obtaining data. A semi-structured interview was also used to acquire qualitative data about the detailed perception and experiences on the attachment styles and parent-child relationship. Common themes of each variable were identified through thematic analysis. Results showed that four out of five participants depicted positive relationship to their fathers, while all of them reported to have positive relationship to their mothers. It was also found that four participants have preoccupied attachment style, while the other one has fearful attachment style. Common themes in describing their relationship with their mother include being close, influential to participants’ life, unbounded communication, favorable reason of trusting, and sometimes being inattentive. On the other hand, having distant relationship, limited communication about romantic relationship, uninfluential to participant’s life, and favorable reason of trusting were the common themes in describing relationship with father. Lastly, less trusting, being dependent, and emphasis on valuing intimacy were the common themes in describing their style of attachment.

Keywords: attachment, Parent-Child Relationship, relationship quality, emerging adult, illegitimate

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9 A Risk Pathway of Distal and Proximal Factors for Self-Injury among Adolescents

Authors: Sarit Gideoni Cohen


The aim of the study was to examine possible risk pathway which initiated by the distal risk factors of insecure attachment to the mother, the father and peers and then developed by means of proximal risk factors: stressful life events and emotional distress. 275 participants (aged 13-26) from high-schools, youth groups and university were requited. Twenty-two percent participants reported at least one episode of self-injury. The relationship between paternal and peer attachment were partly mediated by stressful life events and depressive symptoms. Paternal and peer attachment influences during adolescence as contributing to risk pathway for self-injury were acknowledged.

Keywords: adolescence, Depression, attachment, self-injury, stressful life-events

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8 Exploring 'Attachment Theory' in the Context of Early Childhood Education

Authors: Wendy Lee


From the mid-twentieth century onward, the notion of ‘attachment’ has been used to define the optimum relationship between young children and their carers; first applied to parents and young children and more recently with early childhood educators and children in their care. However, it is seldom, if ever, asked whether the notion of ‘attachment’ and more especially so-called Attachment Theory, as propounded by John Bowlby and others, provides a sound basis for conceptualising child-adult relationships in early years. Even if appropriate in the context of family, the use of the term raises a number of questions when used in early childhood education. Research has shown that our youngest children (infants) in early childhood centre based care settings, are given the utmost priority to build 'attachments' with their educators. But exactly when, how and why does this priority diminish - and should it (for preschoolers)? This presentation will elaborate on such issues and will argue that there is a need to reconceptualise and redefine how 'quality relationships' should be measured and implemented in the daily practices and pedagogical methods adopted by early childhood educators. Moreover, this presentation will include data collected from the empirical study conducted, that observed various early childhood educators and children in Australian early childhood centres. Lastly, the thoughts, feelings and desires of parents of children in early childhood centre-based care, regarding the term 'attachment' and 'quality relationships' will be shared in the hope that we can take one step closer in bridging the needs of families, children, early childhood centres, educators, and the wider community.

Keywords: pedagogy, Early Childhood Education, attachment, Relationships

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7 The Child Attachment Interview: A Psychometric Longitudinal Validation Study in a German Sample

Authors: Jorn Meyer, Stefan Sturmer


The assessment of attachment patterns in toddlers and adults has been well researched, and valid diagnostic methods (e.g., Strange Situation Test, Adult Attachment Interview) are applicable. For middle and late childhood, on the other hand, there are only few validated methods available so far. For the Child Attachment Interview (CAI) promising validation studies from English-speaking countries are available, but so far a comprehensive study on the validity of a German sample is lacking. Within the scope of a longitudinal project, the results of the first point of measurement are reported in this study. A German-language version of the CAI was carried out with 111 primary school children (56% female; age: M = 8.34, SD = 0.49). In relation to psychometric quality criteria, parameters on interrater reliability, construct validity and discriminant, and convergent validity are reported. Analyses of the correlations between attachment patterns and internalizing and externalizing behavior problems from parent and teacher reports are presented. The implications for the German-language assessment of attachment in middle and late childhood in research and individual case diagnostics, e.g., in the context of conducting expert evaluation reports for family courts, are discussed.

Keywords: Developmental Psychology, attachment, longitudinal study, attachment assessment

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6 Maternal Mind-Mindedness and Its Association with Attachment: The Case of Arab Infants and Mothers in Israel

Authors: Gubair Tarabeh, Ghadir Zriek, David Oppenheim, Avi Sagi-Schwartz, Nina Koren-Karie


Introduction: Mind-Mindedness (MM) focuses on mothers' attunement to their infant's mental states as reflected in their speech to the infant. Appropriate MM comments are associated with attachment security in individualistic Western societies where parents value their children’s autonomy and independence, and may therefore be more likely to engage in mind-related discourse with their children that highlights individual thoughts, preferences, emotions, and motivations. Such discourse may begin in early infancy, even before infants are likely to understand the semantic meaning of parental speech. Parents in collectivistic societies, by contrast, are thought to emphasize conforming to social norms more than individual goals, and this may lead to parent-child discourse that emphasizes appropriate behavior and compliance with social norms rather than internal mental states of the self and the other. Therefore, the examination of maternal MM and its relationship with attachment in Arab collectivistic culture in Israel was of particular interest. Aims of the study: The goal of the study was to examine whether the associations between MM and attachment in the Arab culture in Israel are the same as in Western samples. An additional goal was to examine whether appropriate and non-attuned MM comments could, together, distinguish among mothers of children in the different attachment classifications. Material and Methods: 76 Arab mothers and their infants between the ages of 12 and 18 months were observed in the Strange Situation Procedure (49 secure (B), 11 ambivalent (C), 14 disorganized (D), and 2 avoidant (A) infants). MM was coded from an 8-minute free-play sequence. Results: Mothers of B infants used more appropriate and less non-attuned MM comments than mothers of D infants, with no significant differences with mothers of C infants. Also, mothers of B infants used less non-attuned MM comments than both mothers of D infants and mothers of C infants. In addition, Mothers of B infants were most likely to show the combination of high appropriate and low non-attuned MM comments; Mothers of D infants were most likely to show the combination of high non-attuned and low appropriate MM comments; and a non-significant trend indicated that mothers of C infants were most likely to show a combination of high appropriate and high non-attuned MM comments. Conclusion: Maternal MM was associated with attachment in the Arab culture in Israel with combinations of appropriate and non-attuned MM comments distinguishing between different attachment classifications.

Keywords: attachment, maternal mind-mindedness, Arab culture, collectivistic culture

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5 Conceptualizing Psycho-Social Intervention with Juvenile Offenders as Attachment Therapy: A Practical Approach

Authors: Genziana Lay


A wide majority of older children and adolescents who enter the juvenile court system present with an array of problematic symptoms and behaviors including anxiety, depression, aggressive acting out, detachment, and substance abuse. Attachment theory offers a framework for understanding normative and pathological functioning, which during development is influenced by emotional, social and cognitive elements. There is clear evidence that children and adolescents with the highest risk of developing adaptation problems present an insecure attachment profile. Most offending minors have experienced dysfunctional family relationships as well as social and/or economic deprivation. Their maladaptive attachment develops not only through their relationship with caregivers but with the environment at large. Activation of their faulty attachment system leads them to feel emotionally overwhelmed and engage in destructive behaviors and decision-making. A psycho-social intervention with this population conceptualized as attachment therapy is a multi-faceted, practical approach that has shown excellent results in terms of increased psychological well-being and drastically reduced rates of re-offense/ destructive behavior. Through several; components including psychotherapy, monitoring, volunteering, meditation and socialization, the program focuses on seven dimensions: self-efficacy, responsibility, empathy/reparation, autonomy/security, containment/structure, insight building, and relational health. This paper presents the program and illustrates how the framework of attachment theory practically applied to psycho-social intervention has great therapeutic and social reparation potential. Preliminary evidence drawn from the Sassari Juvenile Court is very promising; this paper will illustrate these results and propose an even more comprehensive, applicable approach to psycho-social reparative intervention that leads to greater psychological health and reduced recidivism in the child and adolescent population.

Keywords: Crime, Child, Adolescent, psychosocial, attachment, juvenile

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4 Attachment Patterns in a Sample of South African Children at Risk in Middle Childhood

Authors: Renate Gericke, Carol Long


Despite the robust empirical support of attachment, advancement in the description and conceptualization of attachment has been slow and has not significantly advanced beyond the identification of attachment security or type (namely, secure, avoidant, ambivalent and disorganized). This has continued despite papers arguing for theoretical refinement in the classification of attachment presentations. For thinking and practice to advance, it is critically important that these categories and their assessment be interrogated in different contexts and across developmental age. To achieve this, a quantitative design was used with descriptive and inferential statistics, and general linear models were employed to analyze the data. The Attachment Story Completion Test (ASCT) was administered to 105 children between the ages of eight and twelve from socio-economically deprived contexts with high exposure to trauma. A staggering 93% of the children had insecure attachments (specifically, avoidant 37%, disorganized 34% and ambivalent 22%) and attachment was more complex than currently conceptualized in the attachment literature. Primary attachment did not only present as one of four discreet categories, but 70% of the sample had a complex attachment with more than one type of maternal attachment style. Attachment intensity also varied along a continuum (between 1 and 5). The findings have implications for a) research that has not considered the potential complexity of attachment or attachment intensity, b) policy to more actively support mother-infant dyads, particularly in high-risk contexts and c) question the applicability of a western conceptualization of a primary maternal attachment figure in non-western collectivist societies.

Keywords: attachment, middle childhood, children at risk, non-western context

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3 A Mixed-Methods Design and Implementation Study of ‘the Attach Project’: An Attachment-Based Educational Intervention for Looked after Children in Northern Ireland

Authors: Hannah M. Russell


‘The Attach Project’ (TAP), is an educational intervention aimed at improving educational and socio-emotional outcomes for children who are looked after. TAP is underpinned by Attachment Theory and is adapted from Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy (DDP), which is a treatment for children and young people impacted by complex trauma and disorders of attachment. TAP has been implemented in primary schools in Northern Ireland throughout the 2018/19 academic year. During this time, a design and implementation study has been conducted to assess the promise of effectiveness for the future dissemination and ‘scaling-up’ of the programme for a larger, randomised control trial. TAP has been designed specifically for implementation in a school setting and is comprised of a whole school element and a more individualised Key Adult-Key Child pairing. This design and implementation study utilises a mixed-methods research design consisting of quantitative, qualitative, and observational measures with stakeholder input and involvement being considered an integral component. The use of quantitative measures, such as self-report questionnaires prior to and eight months following the implementation of TAP, enabled the analysis of the strengths and direction of relations between the various components of the programme, as well as the influence of implementation factors. The use of qualitative measures, incorporating semi-structured interviews and focus groups, enabled the assessment of implementation factors, identification of implementation barriers, and potential methods of addressing these issues. Observational measures facilitated the continual development and improvement of ‘TAP training’ for school staff. Preliminary findings have provided evidence of promise for the effectiveness of TAP and indicate the potential benefits of introducing this type of attachment-based intervention across other educational settings. This type of intervention could benefit not only children who are looked after but all children who may be impacted by complex trauma or disorders of attachment. Furthermore, findings from this study demonstrate that it is possible for children to form a secondary attachment relationship with a significant adult in school. However, various implementation factors which should be addressed were identified throughout the study, such as the necessity of protected time being introduced to facilitate the development of a positive Key Adult- Key Child relationship. Furthermore, additional ‘re-cap’ training is required in future dissemination of the programme, to maximise ‘attachment friendly practice’ in the whole staff team. Qualitative findings have also indicated that there is a general opinion across school staff that this type of Key Adult- Key Child pairing could be more effective if it was introduced as soon as children begin primary school. This research has provided ample evidence for the need to introduce relationally based interventions in schools, to help to ensure that children who are looked after, or who are impacted by complex trauma or disorders of attachment, can thrive in the school environment. In addition, this research has facilitated the identification of important implementation factors and barriers to implementation, which can be addressed prior to the ‘scaling-up’ of TAP for a robust, randomised controlled trial.

Keywords: Implementation, attachment, educational interventions, complex trauma

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2 Exploring Mothers' Knowledge and Experiences of Attachment in the First 1000 Days of Their Child's Life

Authors: Athena Pedro, Laura Bradfield, Zandile Batweni, Michael Dare, Ashley Nyman


The rapid growth and development of an infant in the first 1000 days of life means that this time period provides the greatest opportunity for a positive developmental impact on a child’s life socially, emotionally, cognitively and physically. Current research is being focused on children in the first 1000 days, but there is a lack of research and understanding of mothers and their experiences during this crucial time period. Thus, it is imperative that more research is done to help better understand the experiences of mothers during the first 1000 days of their child’s life, as well as gain more insight into mothers’ knowledge regarding this time period. The first 1000 days of life, from conception to two years, is a critical period, and the child’s attachment to his or her mother or primary caregiver during this period is crucial for a multitude of future outcomes. The aim of this study was to explore mothers’ understanding and experience of the first 1000 days of their child’s life, specifically looking at attachment in the context of Bowlby and Ainsworths’ attachment theory. Using a qualitative methodological framework, data were collected through semi-structured individual interviews with 12 first-time mothers from low-income communities in Cape Town. Thematic analysis of the data revealed that mothers articulated the importance of attachment within the first 1000 days of life and shared experiences of how they bond and form attachment with their babies. Furthermore, these mothers expressed their belief in the long-term effects of early attachment of responsive positive parenting as well as the lasting effects of poor attachment and non-responsive parenting. This study has implications for new mothers and healthcare staff working with mothers of new-born babies, as well as for future contextual research. By gaining insight into the mothers’ experiences, policies and intervention efforts can be formulated in order to assist mothers during this time, which ultimately promote the healthy development of the nation’s children and future adult generation. If researchers are also able to understand the extent of mothers’ general knowledge regarding the first 1000 days and attachment, then there will be a better understanding of where there may be gaps in knowledge and thus, recommendations for effective and relevant intervention efforts may be provided. These interventions may increase knowledge and awareness of new mothers and health care workers at clinics and other service providers, creating a high impact on positive outcome. Thus, improving the developmental trajectory for many young babies allows them the opportunity to pursue optimal development by reaching their full potential.

Keywords: Experience, Knowledge, attachment, Mothers, first 1000 days

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1 Predictors of Rumination and Co-Rumination: The Role of Attachment Dimensions, Self-Compassion and Self-Esteem

Authors: Nebi Sumer, Asli Bugay Sökmez, Elif Manuoglu, Muhammet Coskun


Decades of research have searched out the relationships between self-esteem, self-compassion, attachment, and rumination. Yet, unique mediated and moderated predictor power of these correlates of rumination has not been discovered yet. Moreover, no study examined whether these critical correlates of rumination specifically predict sub-dimensions of rumination that are reflection and brooding. Despite the broad range of study regarding predictors of rumination, a huge gap exists for the possible predictors of co-rumination. To address these issues, the present study mainly investigates the predictor roles of self-esteem, self-compassion, and attachment on dimensions of rumination (brooding and reflection) and co-rumination, especially the mediating and moderating roles of these predictor variables. 510 undergraduate and graduate students from different departments of a major state university in Turkey participated in the current study. The mean age of the participants was 21.8 (SD = 2.29) and 57.3% of them were female. Overall analyses revealed that self-compassion and attachment anxiety was negatively correlated with both co-rumination and brooding. Surprisingly, while attachment anxiety significantly and positively predicted reflection, attachment avoidance predicted reflection negatively. Moreover, anxiety, avoidance and self-compassion all were found to be significant predictor variables of co-rumination. Finally, as expected, a moderating effect of self-compassion revealed in predicting reflection and showed as a mediator in predicting brooding and co-rumination. All findings were discussed in light of the related literature.

Keywords: attachment, self-esteem, self-compassion, rumination, co-rumination

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