Attachment working models and relationship quality in dating couples dk dating
Overview of Attachment Theory Attachment theory is one of the most exciting and promising areas of research and intervention in premarital and marital relationships (Jacobson and Gurman, 1995; Hazan and Shaver, 1994).
Much of the past research has investigated Bowlby’s “types” or “styles” of human attachment (Bowlby, 1969, 1973, 1980; Ainsworth, 1982; Hazan and Shaver, 1994).
However, Shaver and Hazan (1988) have argued that previous conceptualizations of romantic love could actually be integrated within the attachment framework.
Carnelley, Pietromonaco, and Jaffe (cited in Feeney and Noller, 1996) and Kunce and Shaver (1994) have also provided support for the link between attachment styles and the caregiving components of romantic love.
and Shaver, P., 1987) They found that there was continuity between the infant’s early experience of attachment and the style of attachment experienced in adult relationships.
Their study supported and expanded the typology developed by Ainsworth and her colleagues.
Bartholomew’s four styles are the: 1) Secure ( S, O); 2) Dismissing ( S, -O); 3) Preoccupied (-S, O); and 4) Fearful (-S, -O).
However, there has been a lack of utilitarian models of attachment that could be used to assist people in understanding and modifying their experience of intimacy and closeness in relationships.
These in-depth descriptions of how infant-mother affectional bonds are formed and broken spawned a massive amount of research in infant, adolescent and adult attachments (see a review of research in Weiss, 1982 and Ainsworth, 1982), and specifically, the development of love and romance (Hazan and Shaver, 1987; 1994).
The majority of this research has continued to use the three styles of attachment (secure, avoidant, and anxious-ambivalent) first proposed by Bowlby, and expanded by Bartholomew (1990) into a four-group model.
In the nineties, attachment theory continued to attract more attention and predominance in the understanding of love and romance.
In addition to hundreds of research articles, major volumes were written on this subject each year throughout the last decade (Bartholomew and Perlman, 1994; Socha and Stamp,1995; Goldberg, Muir, and Kerr, 1995; Feeney and Noller, 1996; Meins, 1997; Simpson and Rholes, 1998; Cassidy and Shaver, 1999).
People marry because they feel an overwhelming attachment of love; communication and conflict styles express and monitor attachment; intimacy, commitment, sex, trust and reliance are all components that produce attachment.