Clinical Implications of Attachment

By Jay Belsky; Teresa Nezworski | Go to book overview

PREFACE

In the summer of 1983, while Jay Belsky was directing a research program focused on families rearing firstborn infants, two research reports indicating a possible link between insecure attachment and the subsequent development of child behavior problems ( Erickson, Egeland, & Sroufe, 1985;1 Lewis, Feiring, McGuffog, & Jaskir, 19842) came to our attention. Neither of the studies described in these reports demonstrated that insecurity caused subsequent behavior problems in preschool and early school-age children. However, each indicated that under certain conditions, 12- to 18-month-old children who were evaluated as insecurely attached to their mothers in the Strange Situation were at heightened risk for displaying internalizing and/or externalizing behavior problems as older children.

At the time that these investigations came to our attention, we were in the midst of completing attachment assessments on the infants whose families were enrolled in our second longitudinal study and were about to initiate assessments of a third sample. Upon enrolling families in all of our investigations, we promised parents that we would share with them any concerns about their child's development that might surface in the course of our research. Not only did we see such an offer as an inducement to parents to become involved, but in virtually every case this was a motivating factor for them. Even before we informed parents of our policy that the information we obtained on their children belonged to them and was not something that we would keep for ourselves, many queried us about the feedback we would give them concerning our findings.

Having established this implicit social contract to share information, we

____________________
1
Erickson M., Egeland B., & Sroufe L. A. ( 1985). The relationship between quality of attachment and behavior problems in preschool in high risk sample. In I. Bretherton & E. Waters (Eds.), "Growing points in attachment theory and research" (pp. 147-186). Monographs of the Society for Research in Child Development, 50 (1-2, Serial No. 209).
2
Lewis M., Feiring C., McGuffog C., & Jaskir J. ( 1984). "Predicting psychopathology in six-year-olds from early social relations". Child Development, 55, 123-137.

-xv-

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Clinical Implications of Attachment
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page v
  • Contents vii
  • Contributors xiii
  • Preface xv
  • I General Issues 1
  • 1: Clinical Implications of Attachment 3
  • References 15
  • 2: The Role of Infant-Caregiver Attachment in Development 18
  • Acknowledgment 30
  • Appendix: Attachment, Patterns of Adaptation, Continuity and Change 30
  • References 35
  • II Determinants of Attachment Security and Insecurity 39
  • 3: Maternal, Infant, and Social-Contextual Determinants of Attachment Security 41
  • Appendix: Attachment, Patterns of Adaptation, Continuity and Change 88
  • 4: Maternal Antecedents of Attachment Quality 95
  • Introduction 131
  • Appendix: Attachment, Patterns of Adaptation, Continuity and Change 132
  • 5: Relationships at Risk 136
  • Acknowledgments 164
  • References 164
  • References 167
  • III Consequences of Attachment Security and Insecurity 175
  • 6: Attachment and the Ontogeny of Conduct Problems 177
  • References 210
  • Summary and Conclusions 241
  • References 246
  • References 246
  • 8: Attachment and the Development of Behavior Problems 253
  • References 295
  • 9: Avoidance and Its Relation to Other Defensive Processes 300
  • Acknowledgments 318
  • References 318
  • IV Clinical Applications 325
  • 10: Clinical Applications of Attachment Theory 327
  • References 348
  • 11: Intervention in Insecure Infant Attachment 352
  • References 382
  • 12: A Clinical Approach to Attachment 387
  • References 415
  • Author Index 425
  • Subject Index 435
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