Attachment representations and socio-emotional difficulties in alternative care: A comparison between residential, foster and family based children in Chile

Manuela Garcia Quiroga, Catherine Hamilton-Giachritsis, Margarita Ibañez Fanés

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)
171 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Attachment has been assessed in children living in alternative care (AC) settings, such as Residential Homes (RC) and Foster Care (FC). However, no study has been conducted to compare attachment styles in residential, foster and parental care conducted as usual in the same country at the same point in time. There is also a lack of studies conducted in less developed countries. Therefore, the aim of this study was to compare outcomes for children living in three different types of care in Chile. Three groups of children (N=77), living in (RC), (FC) and with biological parents (PC) were compared. Attachment styles, Indiscriminate Friendliness (IF) and socio-emotional / behavioural difficulties were assessed.
Higher rates of secure attachment were observed in the RC group (36.1%) when compared to studies in RC in other countries (mean 18%). However, children in both types of AC were significantly more likely to have insecure and/or disorganised attachment styles than PC children. Higher rates of socio-emotional and behavioural problems were observed in RC (55.6%) and FC (50%) compared to PC (10%). Within type of AC, no significant differences were found, for attachment styles or for socio-emotional/behavioural difficulties, the only difference were the levels of IF, with children in RC having higher levels. As a conclusion, impact of placement in AC can vary between different countries, other factors, rather than only type of AC could better explain differences in attachment security for children. Implications for research and practices are discussed
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)180-189
Number of pages10
JournalChild Abuse and Neglect
Volume70
Early online date13 Jun 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 31 Aug 2017

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Attachment representations and socio-emotional difficulties in alternative care: A comparison between residential, foster and family based children in Chile'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this