An Attachment is an emotional tie between two people (usually a mother and a baby) which develops in stages.
Stages of attachment:
1. Pre-attachment stage: (Birth to 3 months) At about 6 weeks old, a baby will show more of an intrest in other humans than objects, this is shown by smiling at them.
2. Indiscriminate attachment phase: (3 - 7/8 months) Babies will be able to tell the difference between familiar and unfamiliar people, smiling more at the people they know. Although they will let strangers hold and look after them.
3. Discriminate attachment phase: (7/8+ months) Babies form specific attachments and become distressed when seperated from that individual. They avoid unfamiliar people.
4. Multiple attachments stage: (9+ months) Babies form attachments with other major care-givers such as grandparents and non care-givers such as siblings. The attachment with the mother remains the strongest however the fear of strangers weakens.
Explainations of attachment:
1. Learning theory: Attachments are formed through a conditioning process.
2. Bowlby's theory: Attachment is a biological device to survive.