In pediatrics, attachment is the emotional connection that develops between a young child and a parent or other caregiver.
Attachment theory was developed in the mid-20th century by a British psychiatrist, John Bowlby, whose own upper-class British upbringing included the loss of a beloved nanny, and an early trip to boarding school. Attachment theory relates to the emotional bond that connects an in fact to the main person taking care of them (usually their mother). The way in which a mother reacts to the behaviour of her child is of utmost importance as it determines whether this child will be able to count on her and feel safety and comfort.
Here are the 4 types of mother-child attachment styles
- Secure Attachment – The mother is direct, sensitive, consistent and supportive. She thinks that she will cover the needs of her child. She hopes that she will be able to do it. The child feels safe and confident enough to explore their surroundings, they start having faith in their abilities, they learn how to be resilient and they learn how to be independent.
- Avoidant Attachment – The mother is distant, inactive, dismissive, critical and irritable/eager to punish. She subconsciously feels that she does not provide for her child’s needs. The child often feels rejected, they often suffer from emotional isolation and they feel stressed and scared.
- Ambivalent Attachment – The mother is inconsistent, often indifferent and often sensitive. She can’t provide for her child’s needs. The child often feels stressed and insecure, they are angry, they experience emotional abandonment, they can’t control their impulsivity & they are unsociable and aggressive.
- Disorganised Attachment – The mother exaggerates, is unpredictable, inspires fear, a drug addict and suffers from a mental disorder. She is very confused and cannot draw up a strategy to cover her child’s needs. The child feels very scared and sad, they approach strangers trying to find safety, they have low self esteem, they feel angry and are passive.