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Attachment Theory and Parenting Style

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The research evidence strongly suggests that such individual differences in the quality of the mother-infant attachment relationship are predictive of later behavior.

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Research indicates that lack of parental attachment, ineffective parenting, lack of parental monitoring, and parental abuse or neglect are all associated factors of juvenile delinquency and anti-social behavior (Agnew, 1993). According to the article by Peter Boshier (2011), "There are four types of parenting styles: authoritative, authoritarian, permissive, and neglectful" (p. 10). Children who are rejected by their parents are unable to identify with them. Parental rejection and a child's lack of identification with his or her parents are associated, too, with squabbling between the parents. To compound the matter, the success of attempts by parents to control aggression through punishment depends on whether the child has been nurtured by the parents and identifies with them. Parents who neglect and reject their children are ineffective teachers. Their punishment does not reduce aggression in their children but actually stimulates it. Both developmental and comparative studies yield the same description of what makes us the way we are (Bowlby, 1991). If we grow up "naturally," without cultivation, like weeds, we grow up like weeds-rank. If our nurturing is defective-unappreciative, inconsistent, lax, harsh, and careless-we grow up hostile, and the hostility seems as much turned inward as turned outward. The nurturing environments that produce this denigration of self and others are the same ones that breed criminality (Cassidy, & Shaver, 1999).

Research indicates that ...

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Research indicates that lack of parental attachment, ineffective parenting, lack of parental monitoring, and parental abuse or neglect are all associated factors of juvenile delinquency and anti-social behavior.

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Attachment Style

According to attachment theory and research, there are two fundamental ways in which people differ from one another in the way they think about relationships. First, some people are more anxious than others. People who are high in attachment-related anxiety tend to worry about whether their partners really love them and often fear rejection. People low on this dimension are much less worried about such matters. Second, some people are more avoidant than others. People who are high in attachment-related avoidance are less comfortable depending on others and opening up to others.

Explain, based on what you know about attachment theory, how you think genetic and environmental factors have influenced the nature of people with high attachment-related anxiety and low attachment-related avoidance.

Describe how and why this kind of attachment style affects their cognitive and social development.

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