Attatchment Disorder, Antisocial Personality, And Violence (Cover Story)
Annals of the American Psychotherapy Association 2004, Winter, 7, 4
Annals of the American Psychotherapy Association
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Key words: attachment disorder, antisocial personality, and violence There is a serious and rapidly escalating problem throughout our society. More and more children are failing to develop secure attachments to loving and protective caregivers. These children are left without the most basic and important foundation for healthy development. They are flooding our child welfare and juvenile justice systems with an overwhelming array of problems--emotional, behavioral, social, cognitive, physical, and moral--and growing up to perpetuate the cycle with their own children. Children with a history of severe attachment disorder develop aggressive, controlling, and conduct-disordered behaviors that contribute to the development of an antisocial personality. As early as the latency years and preadolescence, these children exhibit a lack of conscience, self-gratification at the expense of others, lack of responsibility, dishonesty, and a blatant disregard for the rules and standards of family and society. Teenage boys who have experienced attachment difficulties early in life are 3 times more likely to commit violent crimes (Raine, 1993). Disruption of attachment during the crucial first three years of life can lead to "affectionless psychopathy": the inability to form meaningful emotional relationships, coupled with chronic anger, poor impulse control, and a lack of remorse (Bowlby, 1969). These disturbing psychosocial qualities have contributed to a more violent and "heartless" character to the crimes being committed by today's youth.
- Category: Psychology
- Published: 22 December 2004
- Publisher: American Psychotherapy Association
- Print Length: 20 Pages
- Language: English