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Attachment theories of Bowlby and Ainsworth

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Review the case of Michael in your initial post, utilizing the traditional attachment theories of Bowlby and Ainsworth as well as the more contemporary views of Neufeld (video) to explain the atypical development of Michael. Clearly state if these theories adequately account for the problems faced by this young man. Is there a difference between the traditional views of attachment theory (Bowlby and Ainsworth) and the more contemporary applications of attachment theory (Neufeld)?

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John Bowlby's theory of attachment, developed in the late 1950's, is one of the most common theories, in which a caregiver and a child develop a method in which the attachment behaviors of the infant are idyllically responded to by adult attachment behaviors, providing security and emotional adaptation. Bowlby believed that there was a strong causal relationship between a child's parental attachment, and the ability to form and develop affectionate bonds later in life (Seligman, & Reichenberg, 2010). These theories also suggest that a child's early experiences can affect how they connect or the attachments created with the caregivers. Bowlby hypothesized that a baby is born with a prime instinct to establish an emotional connection or bond with the mother. He furthermore proposed that aggression and destructiveness are secondary, and are a result of a traumatic disturbance in the infant-mother relationship, or a loss of the attachment bond to the mother (Santrock, 2009).

It is believed that Bowlby's interest in the theory of attachment came from the fact that he was not attached to his own biological mother. At the age of seven, he attended a boarding school, and was raised by a nanny, with whom he formed an attachment; however, it was not the attachment that he ...

Solution Summary

Bowlby's studies showed that the personality of the mother can have an adverse affect on how the child develops.