In depth interview with Gábor Máté MD by Michael Mendizza. The topic is attachment (the parent-child bond type of attachment) and the two basic outcomes:
- Secure = Wholeness and Health
- Insecure = ADD, addiction, disease, mental illness
Attachment patternsAnyway, this is a nice discussion.
Much of attachment theory was informed by Mary Ainsworth's innovative methodology and observational studies, particularly those undertaken in Scotland and Uganda. Ainsworth's work expanded the theory's concepts and enabled empirical testing of its tenets. Using John Bowlby's early formulation, she conducted observational research on infant-parent pairs (or dyads) during the child's first year, combining extensive home visits with the study of behaviours in particular situations. This early research was published in 1967 in a book entitled Infancy in Uganda. Ainsworth identified three attachment styles, or patterns, that a child may have with attachment figures: secure, anxious-avoidant (insecure) and anxious-ambivalent or resistant (insecure). She devised a procedure known as the Strange Situation Protocol as the laboratory portion of her larger study, to assess separation and reunion behaviour. This is a standardised research tool used to assess attachment patterns in infants and toddlers. By creating stresses designed to activate attachment behaviour, the procedure reveals how very young children use their caregiver as a source of security. Carer and child are placed in an unfamiliar playroom while a researcher records specific behaviours, observing through a one-way mirror. In eight different episodes, the child experiences separation from/reunion with the carer and the presence of an unfamiliar stranger.
Ainsworth's work in the United States attracted many scholars into the field, inspiring research and challenging the dominance of behaviourism. Further research by Mary Main and colleagues at the University of California, Berkeley identified a fourth attachment pattern, called disorganized/disoriented attachment (insecure). The name reflects these children's lack of a coherent coping strategy. The type of attachment developed by infants depends on the quality of care they have received.