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Reply separately to two of your peer’s posts (See attached peer’s posts, post#1 and post#2). 


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Your responses should be in a well-developed paragraph (300-350 words) to each peer, and they should include evidence-based research to support your statements using proper citations and APA format!!!

Note: DO NOT CRITIQUE THEIR POSTS, DO NOT AGREE OR DISAGREE, just add new informative content regarding to their topic that is validated via citations. 

  • Utilize at least two scholarly references per peer post. 
  • Please, send me the two documents separately, for example one is the reply to my peers Post #1, and the second one is the reply to my other peer Post #2.
  • Minimum of 300 words per peer reply.

Background: I live in South Florida, I am currently enrolled in the Psych Mental Health Practitioner Program, I am a Registered Nurse, I work in a Psychiatric Hospital.


Developmental theories usually focus on describing and explaining the changes that occur in individuals as they grow and progress across the developmental stages of life (Mercer, 2018). These theories focus on various developmental aspects that include cognitive, emotional, and social growth (Hopkins, Geangu & Linkenauger, 2017). 

   Behavioral theory is one of the major development theories that focus on explaining how the environmental factors and interactions affect or influence a person’s behavior (Johnson & Vanderhoef, 2016). As such, the behavioral theory focuses mainly on observable behaviors and how experience contributes to and shapes an individual’s behavior. According to this theory, development is essentially a reaction to stimuli, rewards, reinforcement, and punishments (Mercer, 2018). 

   Behavioral theory indicates that individuals usually learn and acquire their behaviors through their interactions with the environment. Among the main types of learning that are associated with behavioral theory include operant conditioning as well as classical conditioning (Sadock, Sadock & Ruiz, 2014). For instance, classical conditioning is essentially a type of learning process that involves matching a conditioned response with a particular stimulus that leads to the development of a certain behavior (Mercer, 2018). On the other hand, operant conditioning involves the utilization of punishments, rewards, and reinforcements in behavior modification (Mercer, 2018). 

   According to this theory, children are born with a blank mind and environmental factors play a major part in influencing and shaping their behavior. This theory focuses mainly on the reinforcement of appropriate behavior through the use of reinforcements (positive and negative) and rewards and the elimination of inappropriate behavior using punishments (Mercer, 2018). For instance, most of the parents use rewards and positive reinforcements when toilet training their children, which leads to the acquisition of desirable behavior. According to this theory, individuals usually, acquire and develop specific behaviors through various learning processes that include imitation, social facilitation, modeling, identification, contagion, and copying (Mercer, 2018). Therefore, the interaction or exposure of a child to inappropriate behaviors may lead to the adoption and development of inappropriate or maladaptive behaviors. According to this theory, some of the developmental vulnerabilities that might precipitate the development of mental health symptoms include interruptions in the learning process, peer influences, and exposure to inappropriate behaviors or environmental stressors (Pandya et al., 2012).


Hopkins, B., Geangu, E., & Linkenauger, S. (Eds.). (2017). The Cambridge encyclopedia of child development. Cambridge University Press.

Johnson, K., & Vanderhoef, D. (2016). Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Review and Resource Manual (4th ed.). Silver Spring, MD: American Nurses Credentialing Center.

Mercer, J. A. (2018). Child development: concepts and theories. SAGE.

Pandya, M., Altinay, M., Malone, D. A., Jr., & Anand, A. (2012). Where in the Brain Is Depression? Current Psychiatry Reports, 14(6), 634-642.

Sadock, B. J., Sadock, V. A., & Ruiz, P. (2014). Synopsis of Psychiatry (11th ed.). London, England: Lippincott, Williams, and Wilkins.


Attachment Theory

Attachment theory is focused on the relationships and bonds between people, particularly long-term relationships, including those between a parent and child and between romantic partners. Attachment occurs when children develop an emotional affinity to their caregivers such as their mother by clinging, which enhances proximity to the desired individual. Mother-child attachment is pertinent because it has significant consequences for the later development and personality functioning of an individual. Although infants will most likely form an attachment to one person, they can also form an attachment to other people such as a father or a surrogate (Sadock & Sadock, 2021). While theorists realize that every child is special and grow in his or her unique way, they also have recognized that there are general patterns children tend to follow as they grow up, and they have documented these patterns in their theories; hence, when there is a deviation from the expected pattern, a problem emerges (Oswalt, n.d.).

What Happens as the Infants Move Through the Developmental Stages?

Attachment develops gradually and results in an infant wanting to be with a preferred person for security and protection, which reduces stress and anxiety for the infant. As infants move through developmental stages, significant changes occur. The first attachment phase is called “preattachment stage”. Preattachment stage occurs between birth to 8 or 12 weeks. During this period, babies orient to their mothers, follow them with their eyes over 180 degrees range, and turn and move with their mother’s voice. The second stage is the “attachment in the making phase” (8 to 12 weeks to 6 months) when infants become attached to one or more persons in the environment. In the third phase which is the “clear cut attachment” phase (6 through 12 months), infants cry and show other signs of distress when separated from their mother or preferred person; in some infants, this stage can occur as early as 3 months. At this point, infants can be pacified by returning them to their mothers. In the fourth stage (25 months and beyond), the mother figure is perceived as independent, and a more complex relationship between the mother and the child develops (Sadock & Sadock, 2021).

How Interruptions in the Achievement of Developmental Stages Affect an Individual

According to Mary Ainsworth, a developmental psychologist; certain types of attachments and interruptions in the achievement of developmental stages can adversely affect an individual in later life. To this end, she describes three types of insecure attachment: viz, insecure-avoidant, insecure-ambivalent, and insecure-disorganized. The insecure-avoidant child has a history of aggressive parenting and tends to avoid close contact with people but prefers to linger near trusted caregivers when faced with a threat. The insecure-ambivalent child is not exploratory, even without a threat; but prefers to cling to his/her parents. The insecure-disorganized infant has parents who are emotionally absent, with a parental history of emotional abuse in their childhood. According to Ainsworth, these interruptions in the developmental stages are possible precursors to personality disorder and dissociative phenomena in adolescence and early adulthood (Sadock & Sadock, 2021). 

Developmental Vulnerabilities That Could Precipitate Mental Health

A large body of longitudinal research provides compelling evidence for the critical role of early attachment relationships in children’s social, emotional, and cognitive development. It is expected that parent–child attachment relationships may also impact children’s brain development. Thus, it was found that certain developmental vulnerabilities could precipitate mental health in the future (Leblanc et al., 2017). For example, inability or the absence of attachment between an infant and the mother, maternal deprivation, a lack of care by mother or caregiver could precipitate certain attachment disorders such as failure-to-thrive syndromes, psychosocial dwarfism, separation anxiety disorder, avoidant personality disorder, depressive disorders, delinquency, academic problems, and borderline intelligence (Oswalt, n.d.).     


Leblanc, E., Degeilh, F., deneault, V., Beauchamp, M. H., & Berner, A. (2017). Attachment Security in Infancy: A Preliminary Study of Prospective Links to Brain Morphometry in Late Childhood. Frontiers in Psychology8(2141), 1–13.

Oswalt, A. (n.d.). Child and Adolescent Development: Overview. Victoria, TX: Gulf Bend Center.

Sadock, B. J., & Sadock, V. A. (2021). Synopsis of psychiatry (12th ed.). London, England: Lippincott, Williams, and Wilkins.

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