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The Influence of Sensitive Care on Attachment Behavior Abstract J Bowlbys eg 1980 adaptational theory based on research of the infant and child in the context of attachment behavior is an example of the instinctive behavior that decreases the risk of danger and increases safety The role of fathers and mothers in shaping attachment behavior are different Research indicates that attachment patterns are highly dependent on the nature of mothering received in the first year Data supports the intergenerational transmission of attachment behavior From these early attachment patterns internalized working models of the self the other and relationships are constructed that guide later behavior THE INFLUENCE OF SENSITIVE CARE ON ATTACHMENT BEHAVIOR When I used to take my child to daycare I witnessed on numerous mornings a young child who was previously comfortable coming to day care suddenly throwing a tantrum as the parent tried to leave clinging to the parents arm or leg as he or she tried to walk out the door While this was distressing I wondered what had happened to suddenly lead to such behavior It was even more upsetting to the surprised parent as he or she was on their way to work Such behaviors while disturbing to the adults around them are a sign that the child is reaching an important developmental milestone At about 8 months of age children will begin to become anxious clinging and easily frightened about unfamiliar people or objects American Academy of Pediatrics 1993 This phase is commonly called separation or stranger anxiety Separation anxiety usually peaks between 10 and 18 months and then gradually fades during the last half of the second year The childs unwillingness to leave a parent or caregiver is a sign that attachments have developed between the caregiver and child Brazelton 1992 The child is beginning to understand that each object including people in the environment is different and permanent American
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