Fads & traditions: science is limited Medicine: physical development Cognitive vs. Social Cognitive neuroscience Child psychiatry, child clinical psychology: very difficult--autism, schizophrenia, etc.
Often can’t do the same kinds of experiments: lack of random assignment Need long-term (longitudinal) data Can use animal models Can study different cultures
Normal: wide range All cultures: Responsive to needs. Fed, protected from scary things, warm, etc. Reciprocal interaction with caregiver Held, talked to, carried, rocked Varied stimulation: need to see, hear, touch different things Maybe need attachment: desirable
Bonding: (mom or others to baby) Attachment: (baby to mom or others) Effects of early isolation & separation
Harlow’s Monkey studies
Stage theories: Freud, Erikson, Piaget, Kohlberg Bonding: What influences emotional bonding of mother to infant? Rats & goats: sensitive periods Marshall Klaus, John Kennell, (1970), 1976) Methodological problems with their studies Immediate contact probably not that important, but why not do it anyway?
A new form of emotional relationship is evidence when infants begin to crawl (7-9 mo.) Eleanor Maccoby (1980) lists 4 signs of attachment
1. 2. 3. 4.
Seek to be near their caretaker Show distress if separated Happy when reunited They orient their actions to the caretaker
Probably universal Evolutionary reasons? Effect of the quality of attachment on later social development Three major explanations: Freud, Erik Erikson, John Bowlby Need for food, trust, firm foundation for exploring the world.
The quality of the relationship with the mother (attachment) becomes the prototype for all love relationships with both sexes (Freud) The quality of attachment determines not only the above but also our relationships to others
Patterns of Attachment
1. Securely attached infants. Use their caregiver as a base for exploring a new room but often return to the caregiver for comfort. These children become visibly and vocally upset when their mothers leave, want to climb into their arms when they return, and quickly calm down. Ainsworth believes that mothers of securely attached infants are responsive to their infants’ signals from the very beginning and enjoy contact with their infants. They respond quickly to their babies’ cries early on. 65% U.S.
Patterns of Attachment
2. Avoidant infants. Sometimes called anxious/avoidant. Insecurely attached, do not cry when their caregiver leaves, nor do they approach the caregiver in the room. Appear indifferent to where their mothers are sitting. Others are effective at comforting them. Caregivers have been found to be impatient and frustrated with child rearing. 23% of U. S. children
Patterns of Attachment
3. Anxious/resistant. Insecurely attached. Appear very upset when their caregiver leaves or returns but are not comforted by her return. They may alternately seek out contact and resist the caregiver’s efforts to hold or comfort them. Appear anxious even when the mothers are near. Do not readily resume playing. Caregivers tend to be inconsistent, misinterpret the child’s signals. 12% U. S. Neglectful and abusive mothers tend to produce 2 and 3. Also, overly intrusive, over stimulating mothers. The key quality seems to be a high degree of synchrony between mother and infant.
Harlow’s Monkey Studies 1
1. Test of drive-reduction theory--(Harlow & Harlow, 1969 et al) Separated 8 monkeys from their mothers shortly after birth Individual cages: one wire surrogate mom, one terry cloth 4 received milk from wire mom; 4 from terry cloth mom The "feel" of the mom’s differed
Over 165 days, all monkeys showed clear preference for terry cloth mom, even if all food came from the wire mother. Harlow concluded that bodily contact and the immediate comfort it supplies is extremely important for attachment
Harlow’s Monkey Studies 2
Does attachment affect exploration? Test of Bowlby’s theory
Normal human and monkey babies run to their mothers for comfort in strange or scary situations. Placed mechanical toys (teddy bear, cooties) in the cages of monkeys raised with wire mothers who supplied milk and terry cloth moms who did not. Frightened monkeys ran to the terry cloth mom for comfort. After fear subsided somewhat, they would venture out to touch the mechanical toys and then run back to the terry cloth mom. Secure base from which to explore new things.
Harlow’s Monkey Studies 3
3. Monkeys demonstrated their attachment to the terry cloth mothers even after a year of separation.
Learned to press lever to raise barrier to view the terry cloth mother, wire mother, and an empty box. Time spent viewing was the dependent variable. Spent more time viewing terry cloth mom. No difference between empty box and wire mother.
Harlow’s Monkey Studies 4
4. (a) Soothing tactile sensations seem to provide sense of security (b) Necessary for healthy development but not sufficient for normal social development; indifferent or abusive to other monkeys as they grew older; could not copulate normally
--Terry cloth moms can’t cuddle, communicate sounds, gestures, punish, or break the attachment. Supports Bowlby. Need interaction for proper regulatory system to develop. All the adjusting here was left to the baby monkey. Harlow’s later studies indicated that movement of the surrogates helped. In hospitals today, babies are rocked. and incubators are made to rock.
THE PRIMACY OF INFANCY
When very young children have to deal with extremely abnormal life circumstances, especially for an extended period of time, it should be expected that the negative experiences will have detectable effects on their later development. Dennis’s & Tizard’s studies: Bad orphanages ----------->depressed intellectual ability Good orphanages ----------> social adjustment problems “As the twig is bent, so grows the tree” If the sapling is bent long enough, the tree will be forever misshapen. If intervention occurs early, there may be only a slight bend in the trunk. Sometimes recovery is remarkable, even from severe deprivation, but there will also probably be residual effects.
Children of the Creche 1
Wayne Dennis (1973)
The babies were left to lie on their backs in their cribs all day; toddlers sat in small playpens with only a ball to play with. They were not talked to or played with. If adopted before age 2, approached normality If adopted before age 6, slightly retarded If stayed in institution, very retarded
Children of the Creche 2
Barbara Tizard (1975-1989) England
High quality although high turnover of staff. Compared to control group. Did well intellectually, social problems. Those who stayed in the institution did the worst. Those who were adopted fared best; formed attachments to adopted parents; social relationships still odd--overly friendly, difficulty with peers. Those who returned to their homes had high rate of antisocial behavior Adopting before age 2 produced the best results, but many older children still formed attachments to their adoptive parents.