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Lecture 7

PSY210H1 Lecture Notes - Lecture 7: Attachment In Adults, Attachment Theory

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Lecture 7 PSYA02 Notes
Bolwby’s Attachment Theory
The Infant’s Ties to its Mother
oMother as “secure base” — exploratory behavior
oMother as “safe haven” — proximity-seeking
The Attachment System
oAn evolved, goal-directed, behavioral system
oi.e., a “mommy-stator “proximity-stat”
Working Models
oInternal representations of infants’ early experiences of parental support
or parental neglect
Attachment system
o emotional, social links; children link with primary caregiver (mom)
oUse mom as secure base to explore; as long as she is around, they are
encouraged to explore (secure based behaviour)
oIf too far from mom—enfant will return to mom to ensure safety
Evolutionary adaptation where if infant feels stress, then mother
feels stress designates a safe, proper and acceptable distance.
More dangerous and threatening the environment = closer
proximity to mom
oWorking: children building expectations internal representation of
whether or not you will receive care or support if requested
Ainsworth’s Strange Situation
Separation anxiety – separation from mother = upset child
Stranger anxiety – presence of stranger = upset child
1. Infant explores.
2. Introduction of a stranger.
3. Parent leaves infant with stranger — first separation.
4. Parent returns, stranger leaves quietlyfirst reunion.
5. Parent leaves infant alone in the room — second separation.
6. Stranger returns, initiates play with infant.
7. Parent returns, stranger leaves quietlysecond reunion.
Test provides similar reactions and level of intensity but children responded
strikingly different to each situation.
Attachment Classifications
Avoidant (far right)
oReady to explore
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