Disruption of Attatchment


Bowlby suggests attatchment is critical to healthy psychological development.

Short-term separation (PDD Model)- around 8-9 months when child has established attachment theres is often an immediate response to separation. short-term separation behaviour often follows a typical pattern:

  • Protest- over distress, crying, seeking mother, resisting comfort.
  • Despair -calmer , unresponsive to comfort, appearing withdrawn.
  • detachment- increasing responsiveness to others but appearing indifferent.

Robertson and Robertson (1969) how young childrens brief separation from their mothers affected their mental state and psychological development. case study of John involved them carrying out naturalistic observations of the 17 month old while he stayed in a residential nursery for 9 days when his mother went into hospital. John experienced extreme stress- film shows john bein gover whelmed by strange environment, clinging to a teddy bear and becoming progressivly more withdrawn and despairin. when re-united with mum he tried to get away from her and showed outbursts of anger towards her for months. shows separation has long term effects 

recorded 4 other children but acted as foster parents to each child- effects of separation were far less than johns in hospitals parents are now allowed unlimited acces to thir sick children. 

DEPRIVATION (Long-term sepration)

Bowlbys maternal deprivation hypothesis- if infant is unable to develop warm, intimate and continuous relationship with a mother figure then child would have difficulty forming relationships with other people and would be at rik of behavioural disorders.

Failure to form attatchments and effects of institutionalisation 

Hodges and Tizard (1989) to…


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