Parenting and Intellectual Disability: An Attachment Perspective

Rinat Feniger-Schaal, David Oppenheim, Nina Koren-Karie and Nurit Yirmiya

in The Oxford Handbook of Intellectual Disability and Development

Published in print August 2011 | ISBN: 9780195305012
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

Parenting and Intellectual Disability: An Attachment Perspective

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  • Psychology
  • Developmental Psychology



This chapter begins with a brief review of attachment theory. It describes how attachment is assessed using the Strange Situation Procedure (SSP), and reviews the studies of attachment in children with Intellectual Disability (ID). It introduces two issues pertinent to attachment and ID: the first involves the cognitive prerequisites for the development of attachment; the second involves the factors contributing to the development of secure (or insecure) attachments in typically developing children, as well as in the development of children with ID. In addition to factors relating to the children, the chapter considers factors relating to the parents, including both parents' behavior with their children as reflected in their sensitivity, and parents' representations of their children, as reflected in their insightfulness into the experience of the child and their reactions to the diagnosis of the child.

Keywords: Attachment theory; children with Intellectual Disability; parental behavior; parenting; cognitive delay

Article.  11618 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Developmental Psychology

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