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Attachment & Human Development

Allison K Farrell, Theodore E A Waters, Ethan S Young, Michelle M Englund, Elizabeth E Carlson, Glenn I Roisman, Jeffry A Simpson
Children who experience high-quality early parenting tend to have better physical health, but limited research has tested whether this association extends into adulthood using prospective, observational assessments. Likewise, mechanisms that may explain such links have not yet been illuminated. In this study, we test whether the quality of early maternal sensitivity experienced during the first 3½ years of life predicts cardiometabolic risk at midlife (ages 37 and 39 years) via attachment representations measured in young adulthood (ages 19 and 26 years)...
November 14, 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Michael W Harvey, Allison K Farrell, Ledina Imami, Justin M Carré, Richard B Slatcher
Prior evidence suggests that an individual's attachment orientation is linked to the health and health-related biology of his/her romantic relationship partners. The current study examined whether this effect extends to parent-child relationships. Specifically, we investigated the association between maternal attachment anxiety and avoidance and diurnal cortisol of offspring. In a sample of 138 youth with asthma and their primary caregivers, caregivers reported their attachment orientations, and their children (aged 10-17) supplied four saliva samples per day over four days to assess diurnal cortisol patterns...
November 8, 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Katherine Ehrlich, Jude Cassidy
Over the last 40 years, researchers have made considerable progress identifying the ways in which attachment security shapes individuals' social and emotional functioning. In recent years, new investigations have shed light on connections between attachment and physiological systems in the body. The goal of this special issue is to focus attention on how attachment may be related to biological markers that relate to physical health, including inflammation, cortisol, and cardiometabolic risk. The papers in this special issue, highlighted in this introduction, demonstrate that these links may exist across the lifespan...
November 8, 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Katherine B Ehrlich, Jessica A Stern, Jacquelynne Eccles, Julie V Dinh, Elizabeth A Hopper, Margaret E Kemeny, Emma K Adam, Jude Cassidy
Individuals' social experiences are associated with their mental health, physical health, and even mortality. Over the last 30 years, researchers have examined the ways in which these social experiences might be associated with chronic inflammation - a component underlying many of the chronic diseases of aging. Little research, however, has examined the role of adults' attachment style as a specific social component that might be associated with inflammation. In the present study, we utilized data from a sample of 59 African-American adults from the Maryland Adolescent Development in Context Study (MADICS) to examine the links between attachment avoidance and attachment anxiety and C-reactive protein (CRP) and interleukin (IL)-6...
November 8, 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Kristin Bernard, Camelia E Hostinar, Mary Dozier
In the current pilot study, we examined whether insecure or disorganized attachment was associated with elevated inflammation (i.e. C-reactive protein [CRP]) in children with histories of child protective services (CPS) involvement, and whether early childhood CRP predicted body mass index (BMI) in middle childhood. Participants included 45 CPS-referred children and 39 low-risk comparison children, for whom we assessed levels of CRP in early childhood (Mean age = 4.9 years). For the CPS-referred children, who were drawn from an ongoing longitudinal study, we had attachment classifications (assessed during infancy with the Strange Situation) and BMI data (assessed during early and middle childhood); these data were not available for the low-risk comparison group...
November 8, 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Stella Tsotsi, Jessica L Borelli, Nurshuhadah Binte Abdulla, Hui Min Tan, Lit Wee Sim, Shamini Sanmugam, Kok Hian Tan, Yap Seng Chong, Anqi Qiu, Helen Chen, Anne Rifkin-Graboi
Caregiving insensitivity and fear dysregulation predict anxiety symptoms in children. It is unclear, however, whether sensitive parental care during infancy predicts fear regulation later in childhood. To address this question, we asked whether observed maternal sensitivity, measured at 6 months, predicts 42-month-old children's laboratory-induced fear responses (n=213) during a fear-eliciting episode. We predicted that higher levels of maternal sensitivity would be associated with greater fear regulation. We operationalized fear regulation as decreases in fear over repeated trials of a novel, potentially frightening, stimulus...
November 8, 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Jean-Philippe Gouin, Sasha MacNeil
Attachment style may influence the acculturation process by shaping the types of social relationships that individuals form and maintain. Social relationship quantity and quality have been linked to chronic low-grade systemic inflammation, an immune process associated with risk for age-related diseases. The goal of this study was to investigate whether attachment style moderates the change in systemic inflammation during the early phases of the acculturation process, a period associated with rapid changes in social functioning...
November 8, 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Alessandro Talia, Laura Muzi, Vittorio Lingiardi, Svenja Taubner
This paper investigates if therapists' attachment classifications are linked to different types of therapists' attunement in session. We present coding procedures and validation of the Therapist Attunement Scales (TASc), a transcript-based instrument that assesses attunement in therapy and that we hypothesized would be associated with therapists' attachment classifications. Fifty therapists were administered the Adult Attachment Interview (AAI), and therapy sessions with each therapist were rated with the TASc...
October 18, 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Mikko J Peltola, Marinus H van IJzendoorn, Santeri Yrttiaho
The present study measured event-related potentials (ERPs) to investigate whether cortical responses to facial expressions of fear are associated with the development of secure and insecure patterns of infant-mother attachment during the first year. Based on previous findings showing reduced attentional biases to fearful faces in infants with insecure and disorganized attachment, we hypothesized that insecure and disorganized attachment would be associated with reduced ERP differentiation of fearful from non-fearful faces...
October 10, 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Kirsten Hauber, Albert Boon, Greet Kuipers, Robert Vermeiren
The aim of this study in a high-risk adolescent sample with personality disorders receiving intensive mentalisation-based treatment (MBT), was first, to examine deviations in insecure attachment distribution of the normative pattern, and in borderline personality disorder and other personality disorders; second, to explore whether MBT alters attachment representations and whether these alterations are related to changes in psychological distress. A total of 60 adolescents were investigated pre-treatment for both categorical and continuous measures of the Adult Attachment Interview (AAI)...
October 5, 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Lavinia Barone, Andrea Carta, Yagmur Ozturk
To date, few studies have investigated the social-emotional functioning of planned lesbian families, wherein only one parent is the biological mother of the child. We examined if being a biological versus non-biological mother plays a role in planned lesbian couple functioning and mother-infant play interactions. The present study analyzes the attachment state of mind, couple alliance, parenting stress, and emotional availability in a sample of 40 mothers (20 biological and 20 non-biological). The results showed that mothers' life-long attachment experiences and related mental states of mind, rather than biological relatedness between the parent and child, matter in a mother and child's emotional involvement in parent-child interaction...
October 3, 2018: Attachment & Human Development
J Solomon, A Beetz, I Schöberl, N Gee, K Kotrschal
This exploratory study describes the development of a classification system for dogs' attachment security to caregivers that adheres closely to Ainsworth's seminal methodology. Fifty-nine adult dogs and caregivers participated in a mildly threatening laboratory encounter with a stranger (TS) and the Strange Situation (SSP). Dog and attachment experts adapted Ainsworth's classification system  for the behavioral repertoire of the dog. Four potentially comparable patterns of attachment were identified. The proportions of secure and insecure classifications (61% and 39%) were similar to those found in human toddlers...
September 24, 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Manuela Oehler, Elia Psouni
Lacking secure attachment representations is associated with vulnerability to mental and physical health problems, perhaps mediated by increased susceptibility to stress and impaired emotion regulation. Even though cognitive representations of self and others tend to favor confirmation over information, research has shown that adult attachment security can be positively influenced. In a randomized control trial using a mixed between- and within-subjects design, participants (N = 112) were mobile primed with attachment security stimulating visualization tasks, over a 7-day period...
September 20, 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Jennifer M StGeorge, Jaime K Wroe, Miranda E Cashin
Reviews of attachment research point to fathers' capacity to provide for a secure child-parent attachment relationship; a suggested mechanism for the development of this relationship may be sensitive and challenging play interactions. This review synthesises research on fathers' challenging and stimulating play by mapping the variation in construct definitions and reporting on the association of fathers' stimulating play with child outcomes. Using search terms such as "father", "stimulating"and "challenging", 26 studies were identified, including 16 longitudinal studies, which assessed the association between father-child stimulating or challenging play, and child outcomes...
December 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Tomotaka Umemura, Lenka Lacinová, Jakub Kraus, Eliška Horská, Lenka Pivodová
Using 212 adolescents from a central-European country (mean age = 14.02, SD = 2.05, ranged from 11 to 18 years; females = 54%) and a multi-informant method to measure adolescents' behavioral and emotional adjustments, the present study explored three aspects regarding the attachment hierarchy. (1) The three types of behavioral systems of Rosenthal and Kobak's important people interview (IPI) were initially validated using an exploratory factor analysis with a US sample. Using a confirmatory factor analysis with a Czech sample, we replicated these three behavioral systems: attachment bond, support seeking, and affiliation...
October 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Yael Lahav, Alana Siegel, Zahava Solomon
Spouses of traumatized war veterans might suffer from distress following indirect exposure to combat and direct exposure to domestic abuse. Yet the effect of this twofold trauma exposure is far from being fully understood. Theory views attachment security as a personal resource mitigating adversity, whereas attachment insecurities intensify distress. Nevertheless, there are mixed results concerning the effects of attachment in the aftermath of trauma. Furthermore, the role of trauma exposure levels regarding the effects of attachment remains largely uninvestigated...
October 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Laura E Brumariu, Kathryn R Giuseppone, Kathryn A Kerns, Magali Van de Walle, Jean-François Bureau, Guy Bosmans, Karlen Lyons-Ruth
The purpose of this study was to assess behavioral manifestations of attachment in middle childhood, and to evaluate their relations with key theoretical correlates. The sample consisted of 87 children (aged 10-12 years) and their mothers. Dyads participated in an 8-min videotaped discussion of a conflict in their relationships, later scored with the Middle Childhood Attachment Strategies Coding System (MCAS) for key features of all child attachment patterns described in previous literature (secure, ambivalent, avoidant, disorganized-disoriented, caregiving/role-confused, hostile/punitive)...
October 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Florence Charest, Martine Hébert, Annie Bernier
Attachment theory provides a relevant framework for understanding the psychosocial adjustment of victims of child sexual abuse (CSA). However, most studies have been conducted among adult populations and none have focused on the impact of both preschoolers' and mothers' experience of sexual abuse on attachment security. The aim of this study was to compare attachment representations in sexually abused (n = 258) and non-abused preschoolers (n = 133), and to explore the relation between maternal history of CSA and children's attachment representations...
October 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Evelien Platje, Paula Sterkenburg, Mathile Overbeek, Sabina Kef, Carlo Schuengel
Video-feedback Intervention to promote positive parenting-visual (VIPP-V) or visual-and-intellectual disability is an attachment-based intervention aimed at enhancing sensitive parenting and promoting positive parent-child relationships. A randomized controlled trial was conducted to assess the efficacy of VIPP-V for parents of children aged 1-5 with visual or visual-and-intellectual disabilities. A total of 37 dyads received only care-as-usual (CAU) and 40 received VIPP-V besides CAU. The parents receiving VIPP-V did not show increased parental sensitivity or parent-child interaction quality, however, their parenting self-efficacy increased...
October 2018: Attachment & Human Development
Tsachi Ein-Dor, Willem J M I Verbeke, Michal Mokry, Pascal Vrtička
Attachment in the context of intimate pair bonds is most frequently studied in terms of the universal strategy to draw near, or away, from significant others at moments of personal distress. However, important interindividual differences in the quality of attachment exist, usually captured through secure versus insecure - anxious and/or avoidant - attachment orientations. Since Bowlby's pioneering writings on the theory of attachment, it has been assumed that attachment orientations are influenced by both genetic and social factors - what we would today describe and measure as gene by environment interaction mediated by epigenetic DNA modification - but research in humans on this topic remains extremely limited...
August 2018: Attachment & Human Development
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