Your early interactions left you with a deep impression of the nature of relationships. Bowlby called this impression an ‘internal working model’ of attachment. It contains beliefs and expectations related to:
- Your sense of self (whether you believe you are worthy of love and attention, whether you can tolerate solitude and whether you believe you are capable of reaching for help when needed).
- Other people and how they are likely to respond to you (how confident you are that they will be responsive, warm, attentive, sensitive, dependable and helpful, or whether you expect them to be over-involved, angry, shaming, dismissive, abusive, neglectful or emotionally absent).
- The nature of relationships (how to communicate within them, whether you expect crises are likely to get resolved etc).