Disabled children, maltreatment and attachment

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21 Citations (Scopus)


Two bodies of literature on children with disabilities are identified and described. One recognizes an association between disability and maltreatment. The other finds an association between children with a disability and insecure attachments. The present paper seeks a theoretical integration between these two research traditions. The model generated examines the dynamics that affect a child with a disability’s attachment classification and risk of being maltreated in terms of a transaction between both parental and child factors. In the case of children with certain types of disability, unresolved parental states of mind with respect to attachment are seen as a risk factor for maltreatment. Implications for prevention, support and treatment are considered.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)743-760
Number of pages18
JournalBritish Journal of Social Work
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2006

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