To begin to understand the attachment theory one must first understand and have a clear definition of what attachment is. From my point of view attachment is a lasting, secure and positive bond between a child and a caregiver, a reciprocal relationship.
“Attachment, as a behavioural system introduced by Bowlby (1969, 1973, 1979, 1980), is thus a set of behaviours (crying, smiling, clinging, moving, looking, etc) that function together to achieve proximity to the primary caregiver. The biological purpose of such an innate behavioural system is to keep the infant close to the mother and protect it during its early and most vulnerable years”(http://psychology.about.com) 1
A baby who has formed an attachment responds well with the adult she has bonded with, this response makes the adult continue providing the care, nourishment, nurturing and stimulation the child needs to ensure a healthy well-rounded development. As the baby grows mechanisms are developed to allow this bonding to continue, traditionally a baby would have been carried around by the mother, usually in a papoose, till old enough to crawl around. Then when the baby could crawl it could follow its mother, reach objects on its own and explore, always being able to get to where mum is if and when needed. Babies are able to cry from birth, this cry is plaintiff and helpless, this makes us want to hold them and comfort them, a baby who knows she will be picked up when distressed becomes secure, trust develops and the baby understands that all she needs to do is cry and help is there. When a baby looks into our faces when we are feeding them we begin to speak to them, our voices soften and our tones become sweeter, almost saccharin, when they hold our finger and begin to make cooing noises it tugs the heart strings, we respond with more chatter, the content doesn’t matter, what does matter is that we are bonding, an attachment is forming between us an...