Effects of deprivation and privation
Attachments can be damaged if the relationship between the caregiver and infant is broken. Much research has focused on the effect of this brake on future development.
It is important that you clearly understand the different terms involved here. Practice the terms by trying this next exercise.
Drag the words next to the correct definitions and then mark your answer to see how you got on:
Deprivation is when a attatchment is formed but then is interupted or taken away. For example, when a parent passes away. Separation is when an attachment is taken away yet this may not be harmful. For example, when parents divorce. The key point is that the child still has at least 1 main attachment type, either mum or dad. Privation is when an attachment never forms atall. For example, Romanian Oprhans.
The effects of separation
Separation could be considered the same as short-term deprivation. Robertson and Bowlby (1952) investigated its effects on young children separated from their mothers. They found that the distress felt by the children fell into three categories called the protest-despair-detachment (PDD) model.
The 3 stages of distress are PROTEST, DISPAIR AND DETATCHMENT. 1. Protest- The infant will start kicking, screaming, protesting when mother or father leaves, as seen when child is left at Nursery. 2. Dispair - Child will show little interested in his/her environment and seem to have calmed down. 3. Detatchment - Child's interaction will increase with other children, but this will be superfically and child will show little interest in parent's return.
The child seems to hide its distress during despair and detachment rather than being content with the separation.
However, not all children pass through all three stages. In fact, some children may respond in a different way altogether - there are wide individual differences based on factors such as personality, age, gender and past experiences.
The effects of deprivation
Short-term effects of deprivation are highlighted above but what are the long-term consequences of a lost attachment?
Again, Bowlby has been very influential in this area. His maternal deprivation hypothesis states that long-term intellectual, social and emotional damage follows the deprivation of an attachment during a critical period in the child's development.
This view is supported by Bowlby's research into the case histories of 44 juvenile thieves (Bowlby, 1946). He found that 86% of thieves exhibiting affectionless psychopathy had spent considerable time in hospitals or…