Reactive Attachment Disorder

Reactive Attachment Disorder is a serious disorder that occurs as a result of such as gross deprivation of care or successive multiple caregivers.  In an article on, it is explained that there are two type of reactive attachment disorder, inhibited and disinhibited.  Inhibited reactive attachment disorder is considered a disorder of no attachment.  It is the result of the loss of a primary care giver and the lack of opportunity to establish an attachment with a new care giver, or the lack of opportunity to attach to at least one reliable care giver that is continuous in the baby’s life.  It is characterized by the child not initiating or responding to social interactions in a developmentally appropriate manner. 

Disinhibited attachment disorder occurs when the child has repeatedly lost attachment figures or has had multiple care givers, but was never able to form a continuous and consistent attachment with one.  This disruption in attachments makes the infant renounce attachment all together.  Because of this, the usual social anxiety with strangers is not present and the child treats them as if they have had a lifelong attachment with them.  They will superficially accept anyone as a care giver.

Both forms of reactive attachment disorder are extremely sad and serious,  and I would also say dangerous in the case of disinhibited attachment disorder because of their excessive familiarity. 

Rebekah Pinegar


~ by rebekahcp on October 3, 2009.

One Response to “Reactive Attachment Disorder”

  1. I remember in class that we talked about this and how these kids react to foster care by becoming extremely destructive and always expecting the worse to come from their new foster parents. Sadly, it also dawned on me at that moment that most foster families try really hard to create the best and most beneficial environment for their foster child, but films and books usually make foster families out to be bad. At least from the movies I’ve watched, foster families are not always the best place to be. Of course, usually movies choose the exceptions and make a film out of it for money.

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