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Reflecting on the New York Longitudinal Study (1977) of behavioral traits of infants, how might the effectiveness of caregiving behaviors be different for children with each temperament (name and address 3 traits specifically)? How could that affect level of attachment between caregiver/parents and child?

The behavioral traits of caregivers and the temperament of the infant may not always match. The three different temperaments of infants are difficult babies, easy babies, and slow-to-warm-up babies (Broderick & Blewitt, 2015). Babies that are difficult tend to be more irritable, negative, and fearful; while easy babies are the opposite, they are less active, but more positive (Broderick & Blewitt, 2015). Slow-to-warm-up babies are similar to difficult babies, but are less intense (Broderick & Blewitt, 2015).

A caregiver that is attentive and sensitive to the babies needs will produce a child that is securely attached; however, caregivers that insensitive or neglectful will have children that develop attachment problems (Broderick & Blewitt, 2015). If a parent the parent is neglectful or abusive to the baby, regardless of temperament, there will be an increased chance of attachment disorders. Sensitive caregivers, even with difficult babies, will find that attachment will still develop at a healthy pace, even though it may be more difficult to soothe the infant. The difficult babies will be more taxing to the caregivers, mostly because it is more difficult to care for them, but with support and sensitivity, the caregiver can develop the attachment and produce a child that has better emotion regulation, which will make it easier for the caregiver as the child grows A caregiver that is attentive and sensitive to the babies needs will produce a child that is securely attached; however, caregivers that insensitive or neglectful will have children that develop attachment problems (Broderick & Blewitt, 2015).

Also babies can have several different traits. They can be fearful, irritable, and have positive affect to name a few (Broderick & Blewitt, 2015). Babies that tend to be fearful tend to cry more or pull away, babies that are irritable tend to be more fussy, while babies that are naturally positive tend to smile and laugh more (Broderick & Blewitt, 2015). Like with temperaments, the outcome of attachment is directly tied to the behaviors of the caregivers. The more difficult infants will be taxing, it will be harder to soothe them, but if the caregiver does not respond with sensitivity, the infant will be more likely to have developmental problems. This is similar for children that are more fussy, they will respond negatively to anything that they view as frustrating, which requires patience from the parents. Positive affect babies are the easiest.

Broderick, P. C., & Blewitt, P. (2015). The life span: Human development for helping professionals. Harlow: Pearson Education.

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