What is Attachment Theory and How Does it Relate to Loss Counselling?

Submitted by Adam Szmerling on Sat, 2010-02-13 11:36

The theory of attachment is at once a psychological and an evolutionary one. The theory suggests that a young child needs to develop a relationship with one or two caregivers in order to develop normally, socially and emotionally speaking. Infants tend to seek attachment with a parent or caregiver when the baby feels stressed. In theory, a baby would seek out adults who are sensitive and responsive in nature. The more social interaction takes place, and the more consistently the child sees the parent, then an attachment of love is developed. Coping with grief is closely related to this theory.

As a child matures, he or she will start to use attachment figures (that is, family, or familiar beings) as a “base.” This base is a secure foundation from which the child can explore and then return. This foundation will later influence the child’s thinking patterns and guide their behaviour. When a child loses an attachment figure, then a grief process starts. While this is normal, a child that loses an attachment figure early on in life may benefit from grief and loss counselling.

Attachment therapy is common among adopted children and their parents. This type of therapy may be to help a child overcome grief or to help him or her treat a disorder of mood that comes from the failure to form normal attachments. Children with attachment disorders often come from abusive homes, abrupt separation from caregivers before three years, or frequent change in lifestyle.

Even when we grow up, we still deal with these issues. If you have lost a loved one or have a child suffering from grief, then consider grief counselling. If you live in the Bentleigh or Bayside area, then help is just a short distance away. Counselling in Bentleigh and counselling in Bayside can help you to make peace with your inner demons and accept life as it is.