The significance of insecure attachment and disorganization in the development of children's externalizing behavior: a meta-analytic study.
ABSTRACT This study addresses the extent to which insecure and disorganized attachments increase risk for externalizing problems using meta-analysis. From 69 samples (N = 5,947), the association between insecurity and externalizing problems was significant, d = 0.31 (95% CI: 0.23, 0.40). Larger effects were found for boys (d = 0.35), clinical samples (d = 0.49), and from observation-based outcome assessments (d = 0.58). Larger effects were found for attachment assessments other than the Strange Situation. Overall, disorganized children appeared at elevated risk (d = 0.34, 95% CI: 0.18, 0.50), with weaker effects for avoidance (d = 0.12, 95% CI: 0.03, 0.21) and resistance (d = 0.11, 95% CI: -0.04, 0.26). The results are discussed in terms of the potential significance of attachment for mental health.
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ABSTRACT: This article attempts to trace the intellectual history of the relationship between attachment theory and psychoanalytic thinking, and considers where we are now in the discourse between the two fields. We describe some of the points of convergence, as well as areas of continuing contention, and suggest future directions for attachment work which have a bearing on its relationship with psychoanalysis. In particular, mentalizing theory is discussed as a line of thinking that draws on both attachment ideas and psychoanalysis; recent developments in mentalizing are described within an argument about the future development of attachment thinking. Two constructs connected to attachment and mentalizing, epistemic trust and the concept of a general factor in psychopathology, are discussed along with the implications of these ideas for thinking about the common factors that effective psychotherapeutic interventions share.British Journal of Psychotherapy 05/2015; 31(2). DOI:10.1111/bjp.12150
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ABSTRACT: Electrodermal hyporeactivity (or low skin conductance level, SCL) has been long established as a correlate of and diathesis for antisocial behavior, aggression, disregard for rules of conduct and feelings of others, and generally, externalizing behavior problems in children and adults. Much less is known, however, about how individual differences in children's SCL and qualities of their early experiences in relationships with parents interact to produce antisocial outcomes. In a community sample of 102 families (51 girls), we examined children's SCL, assessed in standard laboratory tasks at age 8 (N = 81), as a moderator of the links between parent-child socialization history and children's externalizing behavior problems at ages 8 and 10, reported by mothers and fathers in well-established instruments and by children in clinical interviews. Mother- and father-child socialization history was assessed in frequent, intensive observations. Parent-child mutually responsive orientation (MRO) was observed from infancy to age 10, parental power assertion was observed from 15 months to age 6 ½, and children reported their attachment security in interviews at age 8 and 10. For children with lower SCL, variations in mothers' power assertion and father-child MRO were associated with parent-rated externalizing problems. The former interaction was consistent with diathesis-stress, and the latter with differential susceptibility. For children with higher SCL, there were no links between socialization history and externalizing problems.Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology 09/2014; DOI:10.1007/s10802-014-9938-x · 3.09 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to investigate longitudinal associations between attachment at early school age and the development of externalizing symptoms in adolescence. The mediating roles of maternal helplessness and role reversal were also examined. Attachment classifications of 136 children (63 boys and 73 girls) and quality of mother-child interactions (role reversal) were observed at ages 5-6 using the separation-reunion procedure (Main & Cassidy, 1988). At age 13, externalizing problems reported by both the adolescent and the mother (Youth Self-Report; Achenbach, 1991), and caregiving helplessness reported by the mother (Caregiving Helplessness Questionnaire; George, Coulson, & Magana, 1997) were evaluated. Results indicated that children with disorganized attachment to their caregivers evidenced the most maladaptive patterns compared with children with secure attachment, displaying high externalizing symptoms and having mothers reporting more helplessness. Significant differences found among the disorganization subtypes indicated that the controlling-punitive subgroup had more maladaptive patterns across variables than did the behaviorally disorganized and controlling-caregiving subgroups. These findings support the idea that early attachment, mother-child interaction quality, and caregiving helplessness should be central themes in prevention and intervention programs with mother-child dyads. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved).American Journal of Orthopsychiatry 09/2014; 84(5):581-589. DOI:10.1037/ort0000017 · 1.50 Impact Factor