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What is Adult Attachment?

Abstract

This paper explores the concept of adult attachment. Although attachment theory is now getting a great deal of attention, there is not yet a clear picture of what it means to be attached in adulthood or what the clinical applications of the approach might be. Using Bowlby’s distinctive ethological-evolutionary framework and updating it with findings from neurobiology and attachment research, it is proposed there is an attachment behavioral system that operates throughout the lives of adults and that this changes the way we understand our clients’ distress and carry out psychotherapy.

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Sable, P. What is Adult Attachment?. Clin Soc Work J 36, 21–30 (2008). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10615-007-0110-8

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Keywords

  • Adult attachment
  • Ethology
  • Evolution
  • Psychotherapy