The attachment behavioral system provides a theoretical linkage between the model of human development and logical theories of emotions and personality (John Bowlby, 1958).
Hazen and Shaver (1987) stated that both infant and caregiver and adult romantic relationships share the same motivational system and attachment behavior structure. Hazen and Shaver also noted that both infant and adult individuals feel secure in the attachment figure’s presence and show intimacy through facial features, bodily contact and exploration in existence, and insecurity in absence.
There are several factors that predict whether adult attachment depends, is tied, or is dependent upon childhood attachment. Firstly, it depends on the individual’s relationships and factors and occasions that contribute to functioning relationships. Secondly, adults’ social and interpersonal relationships also influence on their adult attachments. For instance, if they tend to be secure, confident, and supported by a partner, they might have experienced secure attachment with their caregiver.
Moreover, it is empirically evidenced in “adult attachment theory” that adult romantic relationships share the same attachment style as their infants if their romantic relationships are true attachment relationships. It is also a possibility that adult attachment relationships might only have a partial reflection of their infant’s attachment styles, either secure or insecure. Therefore, adult relationships and infant-caregiver relationships should share the same process of exploration both in adulthood and infancy.
However, the stability of attachment styles is controversial because children with a secure attachment may show an avoidant attachment style after experiencing some distressing events such as divorce, separation, etc. Although, social and cognitive mechanisms imply stability as a rule rather than expectation in relationships, these mechanisms also serve as predictors of continuity and discontinuity of relationships under any circumstances. (Fraley, 2002).