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Outline and evaluate the Influence of childhood for adult relationships (24 Marks)

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Transfer-Encoding: chunked ´╗┐Outline and evaluate the Influence of childhood for adult relationships Bowlby proposed that young child develop an internal working model (IWM) from their first relationship with their primary care giver. This consists of a view of themselves as loveable or otherwise, a model of other people as trustworthy or not to be relied on, and an idea of how relationships work in general. This model is thought to continue to affect adult relationships. The child develops characteristics based on the responsiveness of the mother. Bowlby argued that the attachment style goes to adulthood claimed as the continuity hypothesis. There are three basic variations of attachments which was devised by Ainsworth. These are secure, insecure and ambivalent. It is said that these attachment styles will determine how well an individual can make and maintain relationships. ...read more.


Similarly, also argued that when a disrupted childhood is followed by a strong relationship an insecure attachment can develop into secure. Early relationships with peers can also influence later adult relationships. Close friendships in childhood are often categorised by affection, a sense of alliance & intimacy, and the sharing of personal information. The experience of having friends to confide in promotes feelings of trust, acceptance and a sense of being understood; characteristics that are also important in later adult relationships. In later childhood, particularly adolescence, attachment usually shifts from parents to peers. With this shift, adolescents can redirect interpersonal energy towards romantic partners. These early romantic relationships allow adolescents to gain experience with a new kind of emotional & physical intimacy. However, Madsen found that adolescents with heavy dating frequency generally had poorer quality young adult relationships, showing that too much dating in adolescents can be maladaptive. ...read more.


It is also deterministic because it ignores free will and says that if you want to have secure relationships at adulthood you must have been a secure attachment in early childhood. But we know that attachment types can change and doesn?t just go through the way the theory suggests it does. Also the majority of research is conducted in western cultures. Many children in non-western cultures do not have secure attachments but this doesn?t mean that they grow up to have poor relationships. However, research is often longitudinal which increases reliability of the findings. In conclusion, although this theory provides useful information on how attachment types and peer influence can affect later adult relationships it fails to consider many factors which would also contribute to the attachment style for adulthood. Therefore, we cannot solely use these explanations to explain the influence of childhood on adult relationships. ...read more.

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