ERIC Number: EJ874356
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Mar
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 35
"People Who Need People": Attachment and Professional Caregiving
Schuengel, C.; Kef, S.; Damen, S.; Worm, M.
Journal of Intellectual Disability Research, v54 ns1 p38-47 Mar 2010
From the perspective of attachment theory, this paper discusses individual differences in the quality of caregiving by direct-care staff for persons with intellectual disabilities. Theoretical arguments and findings from related literature are cited to support the probable role of professionals' own attachment experiences and their mental representations thereof. Case examples are drawn from a study on video-based interaction guidance for direct-care staff in group homes for persons with multiple, serious disabilities. These examples illustrate how interventions may avoid attachment-related defences against changing the quality and affective mutuality of personal contact with clients. However, the possibility is discussed that in parallel processes, quality management systems and institutional culture may selectively reinforce care patterns associated with insecure, dismissing attachment, while failing to reward the positive contribution that sensitive, affectively attuned caregiving makes to wellbeing of persons with disabilities.
Descriptors: Severe Mental Retardation, Attachment Behavior, Group Homes, Caregivers, Caregiver Role, Interpersonal Relationship, Staff Development, Multiple Disabilities, Intervention, Interpersonal Competence, Well Being
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A