Secure attachment develops when a child’s caregiver is regularly attuned and nurturing and functions as a safe base for the infant to explore their environment. As they grow into adulthood, these children become adults who are generally at ease with themselves and others and are realistic about the strengths and weaknesses in themselves and others.
This secure attachment is based upon the accumulation of all the successes and failures in interactions between infant and caregiver. And this is an important point to highlight. Attachment is cumulative. No parent is perfect and not attunement to a child is perfect at all times. What is important is that the positive and caring interactions outweigh the negative, misattuned interactions. That is why we talk about ‘good enough’ parenting. There will always be missteps because we are human, the goal is to simply be good enough.