Bowlbys Theory of Attachment

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Attachment can be describe in two different ways, one being bowlbys theory of attachment which is based on attachment through evolution and innate. In this theory bowlbys believes that attachment is innate, where each individual is born with the inherited need to form an attachment, in order for them to survive. In order to be able to survive, bowlbys believes the attachment must form within the sensitive period between the 3-6 months old, unlike a critical period, the sensitive period suggest that it is likely that the attachment will form between this time, but after 6 months it will be difficult for the infants to form their first attachment. Bowlbys argues that the infant forms a special attachment, usually with the mother called monotrapy, where the infant will then have a monotropy attachment to its mother which will provide key features to survival. These include safety, where the child will feel safe in their attachment to their mother but separation will lead to anxiety. Also it is seen as a safe base for the infant as they feel they have a safe place to return to. This also leads onto the independent working model, which based on freuds idea of the mother and child relationship, bowlbys believes that the first attachment forms a relationship template that allows the child to understand a relationship and the future be able to form a comfortable relationship they and familiar of. This relates to bowlbys continuity hypothesis, where the internal working model ensures that attachments will be reflected in relationships in the persons later life. For example if a child has insecure attachments as a child, this would lead to be shown in difficulties with later relationships. In bowlbys theory, attachment being innate, means that the child has built mechanisms known as ‘social releasers’ which encourages care-giving behavior from parents for example the
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