Fostering Secure Attachment Prevents Depression and Anxiety

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Researchers from China and the Harvard Medical School studied the effects of anxious and avoidant attachment on the development of depression and anxiety in a sample of 662 Chinese university students recruited in Hunan, China. Insecure attachment styles served as a vulnerability factor in the development of depressive and anxious symptoms. The authors recommend fostering secure attachment in prevention and intervention programs as a means of preventing the onset and maintenance of depressive and anxious disorders. Results will appear in Depression and Anxiety.

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Kermit Cole
Kermit Cole, MFT, founding editor of Mad in America, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico as a couples and family therapist. Inspired by Open Dialogue, he works as part of a team and consults with couples and families that have members identified as patients. His work in residential treatment — largely with severely traumatized and/or "psychotic" clients — led to an appreciation of the power and beauty of systemic philosophy and practice, as the alternative to the prevailing focus on individual pathology. A former film-maker, he has undergraduate and master's degrees in psychology from Harvard University, as well as an MFT degree from the Council for Relationships in Philadelphia. He is a doctoral candidate with the Taos Institute and the Free University of Brussels. You can reach him at [email protected]