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Ainsworth Attachment Theory
Updated: 8/29/2020
Ainsworth Attachment Theory
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Storyboard Text

  • Mother (M) sits quietly while the Child (C) explores the room
  • A Stranger (S) enters. For the first minute, S is silent. In the second minute, S converses with M. In the last minute, S approaches B.
  • First Separation: After the 3 minutes, M leaves the room quietly.S and C remain in the room. S will try to behave accordingly to C's needs.
  • First Reunion: S leaves the room as M enters. M greets/comforts C. M tries to settle C into playing again. C starts to re-explore the room.
  • Second Separation: M leaves again, saying "bye-bye". C is alone in the room.
  • Continuation of Second Separation: S enters the room and tries to interact with C and behaves accordingly to C's needs.
  • Second Reunion: S leaves quietly while M re-enters, greeting C. M tries to have physical contact with C.
  • SECURE :M's Behaviour --> reacts quickly and positively to C's needs, responsive to C's actionsC's Behaviour --> distressed when M leaves, happy when M returns, seeks comfort from M when unsettled—————————————————————————————————————INSECURE-AVOIDANT :M's Behaviour --> unresponsive, uncaring, dismissive towards CC's Behaviour --> not distressed when M leaves, does not acknowledge the return of M, does not seek or make contact with M
  • INSECURE-AMBIVALENT :M's Behaviour --> responds to C, but inconsistentlyC's Behaviour --> distressed when M leaves, not comforted by the return of M—————————————————————————————————————INSECURE-DISORGANISED :M's Behaviour --> abusive and/or neglectful, responds in a frightening way towards CC's Behaviour --> shows no attachment behaviour, appears dazed, confused or apprehensive in the presence of M
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