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Mother expectation of bother and infant attachment behaviors as predictors of mother and child communication at 24 months in children of methadone-maintained women



Mother expectation of bother and infant attachment behaviors as predictors of mother and child communication at 24 months in children of methadone-maintained women



Infant Mental Health Journal 26(6): 549-569



This study used a transactional model of development (Sameroff, 1975) to test whether methadone exposure, mother's expectation of her future infant's degree of bother during pregnancy, infant attachment behaviors assessed at 12 months, and mother and child communication assessed at 24 months reciprocally influence each other in a sample of 30 full-term, African American toddlers exposed in utero to methadone and 42 comparison toddlers. Toddlers were videotaped at 24 months communicating with their mothers in eight scripted situations and at 12 months participating in a separation-reunion procedure to assess attachment behaviors. Mothers in both groups were comparable on race, education, age, SES, parity, IQ, and marital status. The relation between methadone exposure and the quality of mother communication was found to be moderated by mother's expectation of her future infant's degree of bother and mediated by avoidant attachment behavior. Infants' disorganized attachment behavior predicted their own lower quality communication at 24 months regardless of methadone exposure. The organization of affect regulation in both members of the dyad can differentially affect the ways in which methadone exposure impacts on the quality of mother communication by 24 months. Results suggest that preventive intervention is most likely to succeed when both mothers and children participate.

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Accession: 059990098

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 28682487

DOI: 10.1002/imhj.20070


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