The role of attachment in couple relationships described as social systems

T. Blom, L. van Dijk*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The role that attachment plays in adult relationships seems insufficiently elucidated. Of the components of early attachment, proximity seeking and security are of prime importance. Of these two, proximity seeking is also important at the outset of adult relationships. The form of security that is characteristic of adult couple relationships, however, is different from attachment security. Working models of attachment relations also play an important role in new adult relationships. Attachment behaviour may also play a role when, under severe stress, adult coping falls short. In our way of thinking however, the functioning of adult relationships cannot be described in terms of a persistence of attachment qualities but has to be described and explained by the theory of social systems.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-87
JournalJournal of Family Therapy
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2007

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