Attachment and You: The Still Face Experiment

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The Still Face ExperiMent

You can tell a lot from watching someone's face.

Especially if it's your mother.

Dr. Edward Tronick conducted experiments to demonstrate an infant’s ability to read and react to social situations.  

When, as children, we are attended to properly, we internalize a consistent sense of goodness and “okayness” from our primary caregivers.  They don’t have to be perfect, only needing to repair when they haven’t attended to us when we needed them.  

If your parent wasn’t able to be consistent or repair in that back and forth that make up connection and attachment, you’re left with ambivalence and anxiety.  You may be unsure of your goodness or even convinced you are essentially bad.  

I’m showing this video to be validating.  Either you got enough or you missed out.  If you still need some, your parent (and by extension, your spouse, friends and children) cannot give enough to satisfy that primal need.  You must give it to yourself now.  There are ways to heal and a qualified mental health clinician or psychologist can help.

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