Disruption of Attachment

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  • Created by: Lauren
  • Created on: 22-04-13 13:18

The PDD Model

Robertson & Bowlby (1952) found three progressive stages as a result of separation from the caregiver:

  • Protest Stage - First, they cried, screamed, kicked and called for their mothers.
  • Despair Stage - Then they became calmer, only cried every now and again and lost interest in their surroundings.
  • Detachment Stage - They appeared to recover and become more interested in their surroundings, however when the caregiver returned, they lost interest in her also.

They also studied a two-year-old called Laura that went to hospital, and she alternated between calm and distressed. After this, other studies of children took place.

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Research on Disruption of Attachment and Reversal

  • Study on John, who spent 9 days in a residential nursery, became very distressed and rejected his mother's care when she returned.
  • However, Jane, Lucy, Thomas and Kate all seemed to adjust well to foster care where substitute emotional care could prevent bond disruption.
  • In the Spitz & Wolf study, 100 psychologically normal children in long-term hospital care showed signs of depression, withdrawal and poor appetite.
  • Skeels and Dye found similar children scored poorly on IQ tests.
  • Bifulco et al. found that 249 women who lost their mothers through separation or death before they were 17 were twice as likely to suffer from anxiety disorders or depression.
  • Skodak and Skeels found that the IQ level of orphan children raised in a home for the mentally retarded rose compared to those who stayed in the orphanage... as they received better emotional care.
  • Bohman and Sigvarsson found that 26% of adopted children classified as problems at age 11, and 10 years later, no different to other people in the population.
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