Attachment and cognitive
As our previous discussions of the internal working model indicated, attachment theory has from the outset recognised the central contribution of cognitive factors to the essentially affective bond that is attachment. The beginning of a true attachment, as we have seen in chapter 6, is dependent on the infant's ability to discriminate, and then to show preference for particular caregiving figures. The goal-corrected partnership discussed in chapter 7 that evolves some years later requires even more advanced cognitive abilities. These include the child's understanding of the motives and needs of the attachment figure and the ability to act strategically on this understanding to achieve attachment-related goals. The strategies used by insecure children in the context of rejecting or inconsistent caregiving can only develop through cognitive skills including learning, observation of the impact of one's own behaviours on the behaviour of another, memory, attention and so on. The development of attachment, and movement to increasingly complex attachment relationships during the early childhood period, can thus be seen to go hand in hand with a range of cognitive abilities of growing sophistication. However, this is not a one-way street.