In psychology, the term affectional bond is a type of attachment behavior one individual has for another individual, typically a mother for her child, in which the two partners tend to remain in proximity to one another. The term was coined and subsequently developed over the course of four decades, from the early 1940s to the late 1970s, by psychologist John Bowlby in his work on attachment theory. The core of the term 'affectional bond', according to Bowlby, is the attraction one individual has for another individual. The central features of the concept of affectional bonding can be traced to Bowlby's 1958 paper: "the Nature of the Child's Tie to his Mother."
Bowlby referred to attachment bonds as a specific type of a larger class of bonds that he and developmental psychologist Mary Ainsworth described as "affectional" bonds. Ainsworth (1989) established five criteria for affectional bonds between individuals, and a sixth criterion for attachment bonds:
A true attachment bond, however, has an additional criterion: the person seeks security and comfort in the relationship.
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