Evolutionary explanations of attachment

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  • Evolutionary explanations of attachment
    • Bowlby's theory
      • Proposed that attachment had evolutionary/biological function- survival
      • Likely we have evolved to be born with innate tendency to seek out attachments- genetically programmed to behave towards mothers in ways that ensure survival
      • Infants programmed to behave in ways to activate caring responses in adults
    • Social releasers
      • Attention: Cry, laugh,stare,noises
      • Physical closeness: Gripping/grasping, following, crying on separation
    • Monotropy
      • Innate tendency to become strongly attached to one single person
      • Usually mother
      • First attachment to develop, strongest overall
    • Critical period
      • Mothering must take place within first 2.5 years of childs life
      • Being denied emotional care/attachment to mother during CP may lead to serious psychological consequences later in life.
    • IWM
      • Early attachments provide templates for later relationships
      • Model of how you and other people likely to behave
      • E.g. If left alone, you may not expect/look for intimacy, have trouble committing


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