The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

Early adolescent outcomes for institutionally-deprived and non-deprived adoptees. I: Disinhibited attachment

Rutter, Michael, Colvert, Emma, Kreppner, Jana, Beckett, Celia, Castle, Jenny, Groothues, Christine, Hawkins, Amanda, Thomas, Thomas G. and Stevens, Suzanne E. (2007) Early adolescent outcomes for institutionally-deprived and non-deprived adoptees. I: Disinhibited attachment Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 48, (1), pp. 17-30.

Record type: Article


Background: disinhibited attachment is an important sequel of an institutional rearing, but questions remain regarding its measurement, its persistence, the specificity of the association with institutional rearing and on whether or not it constitutes a meaningful disorder.
Method: children initially reared in profoundly depriving institutions in Romania and subsequently adopted into UK families were compared with respect to findings at 11 years with children who had not experienced institutional deprivation and who had been adopted within the UK before the age of 6 months. Measures included parental reports, a Strange Situation procedure modified for use in the home and systematic standardised investigator ratings of the children's behaviour.
Results: disinhibited attachment, as reported by parents, showed a high degree of persistence from 6 to 11, but also a reduction over time in its frequency. Investigator ratings validated the parental reports but suggested that much of the fall in rate of disinhibited attachment was a function of the parental measure being less developmentally appropriate at 11 than it had been at 6. Disinhibited attachment was strongly associated with institutional rearing but there was not a significant increase in relation to duration of institutional deprivation beyond the age of 6 months. Mild, but not marked, disinhibited attachment was quite frequent in non-institutionalised adopted children but both the course and correlates indicated that its meaning was probably quite different. In the institution-reared children, disinhibited attachment was associated with a marked increase in service usage and associations with other forms of psychopathology.
Conclusions: disinhibited attachment constitutes a valid, and handicapping, clinical pattern that is strongly associated with an institutional rearing.

Full text not available from this repository.

More information

Published date: January 2007


Local EPrints ID: 48288
ISSN: 0021-9630
PURE UUID: 56e0d48c-772c-4a28-954f-c36445bbe8c2
ORCID for Jana Kreppner: ORCID iD

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 01 Oct 2007
Last modified: 27 Aug 2017 01:41

Export record


Author: Michael Rutter
Author: Emma Colvert
Author: Jana Kreppner ORCID iD
Author: Celia Beckett
Author: Jenny Castle
Author: Christine Groothues
Author: Amanda Hawkins
Author: Thomas G. Thomas
Author: Suzanne E. Stevens

University divisions

Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton:

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.