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Attached: The New Science of Finding--and Keeping--Love

4.02  ·  Rating Details ·  4,594 Ratings  ·  563 Reviews

Is there a science to love?

In this groundbreaking book, psychiatrist and neuroscientist Amir Levine and psychologist Rachel S. F. Heller reveal how an understanding of attachment theory-the most advanced relationship science in existence today-can help us find and sustain love. Attachment theory forms the basis for many bestselling books on the parent/child relationship,

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ebook, 304 pages
Published December 30th 2010 by Penguin Group (USA) (first published October 28th 2010)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Gretchen Friese
Jul 24, 2012 Gretchen Friese rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm a little embarrassed to admit that I read this. Not because it wasn't good, but because I have this thing about posting relationship-y self-help books on here. I don't want people to know that I spend time thinking about my relationship status. I want to seem cooler than that.

This book is better than most relationship books I have read. The author describes how attachment theory can be applied to romantic relationships. There are three types of attachment: secure, anxious, and avoidant. Acco
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Nadeem Ahmad
May 20, 2012 Nadeem Ahmad rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting read on the theory of adult attachments in romantic relationships. While the categorisation of every human relationship into 3 categories of Secure (50% of the population), Anxious (21%), and Avoidant (25%) may not be all inclusive and exhaustive for those with a discerning and scrutinising disposition; however, it does offer a useful insight into your relationships, if you can relate to one of the 3 categories.

What I liked about the book is that it doesn't tell you which is the best
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Marissa
Feb 02, 2012 Marissa rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Bleh. This book had a promising premise and while the underlying theory has some merit, I found the explanations too simplistic, and the examples too stark (almost caricature-like) to capture the nuances of human personalities and relationships. So, while the book had several “A-ha!” moments, the suggestions of what to DO with this information was lacking.

Also, as someone who fell into the Secure/Avoidant category, this book was a let down. There was little acknowledgment that some (most?) peopl
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Deb
Jul 06, 2012 Deb rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
**Attached…to this book**

I’ll admit it. I am totally attached to _Attached_. But, not in an unhealthy way, really. I’ve read my fair share of books on relationships (including textbooks during my clinical training as a therapist), and I can honestly say that this book provides the most elegant framework for organizing, explaining, and rescuing relationship problems that I’ve seen.

It clearly delivers on the hope that the authors have for this book:
“We hope that you will use the relationship wis
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Morgan Blackledge
Nov 27, 2014 Morgan Blackledge rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Attachment theory began in the 1940's as a way to describe patterns of infant and caregiver bonding. It is one of the first psychological theories to integrate evolutionary theory. As such, it represented a radical departure from the dominant psychological theories of the time e.g. Freudian and Behaviorist orientations. Attachment Theory survived (in part) due to its simplicity and profound explanatory power.

The creators of attachment theory (John Bowlby and Mary Ainsworth) posited that mammals
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Ellen Andromeda
Apr 25, 2013 Ellen Andromeda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
It was a interesting and thought-provoking book. However, it's very simplistic and basically says the solution is to date a secure partner and then everything will be fine. Unless you already are secure, and then you can date almost anyone and everything will be fine. I don't think things are ever that neat. Also, a weird omission was that they never talked about a partnership with two anxious style people. They at least mention a few times that two avoidant people rarely get together and why, w ...more
Abeer Hoque
Oct 18, 2011 Abeer Hoque rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: i-recommend
Leave aside for a second that "Attached" by Amir Levine and Rachel Heller slots everyone into 3 relationship attachment categories: secure (50% of the population), anxious (25%), and avoidant (25%) (I'm as suspicious of GUT paradigms as the next wannabe scientist).

However, the authors are both experienced and practicing psychotherapists, and use case after case to provocatively and persuasively put forth their theory, and explain how recognising your own category (and/or sub category) can help
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Gretchen
I'm a little embarrassed to admit that I read this. Not because it wasn't good, but because I have this thing about posting relationship-y self-help books on here. I don't want people to know that I spend time thinking about my relationship status. I want to seem cooler than that.

However, I recently found myself dating a person who had me absolutely flummoxed. A friend suggested this book to me thinking it might offer some insight, and I read it rather quickly.

This book is better than most relat
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Sharla
May 30, 2013 Sharla rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm a bit miffed at myself for leaving this on my list to read for so long -- I wish I had read it sooner. It's a refreshing perspective on attachment theory as it relates to dating and relationships, and was extremely helpful in identifying some of my own tendencies and pitfalls, as well as observations of others. By helping to put things in perspective, I believe I can utilize the information presented to make mindful decisions about my interactions with others, as it pertains to my needs, my ...more
Hanne
Don’t be fooled by the title.
The title is like wishy washing voodoo magic to suddenly make a sparkly relationship appear. And that’s bullshit of course. The actual content of the book is not bullshit though. It opened my eyes, and so many puzzle pieces finally came together.

The premise is that your childhood, but also any experience you had afterwards with intimate relationships, lead to certain attachment patterns. If you’re lucky, you’re securely attached. If you’re slightly less lucky you mi
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Jenny
Jan 02, 2014 Jenny rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was GREAT -- very enlightening around the three types of relationship styles: anxious, secure, and avoidant. One of the most enlightening things for me was that anxious-avoidant is a very common combination -- one person is looking for more closeness, and the other is actively avoiding it. Pretty soon, they both propogate each other's exact triggers and only make things worse! Avoidants don't date each other (they are both on the look-out for new and shiny), and an anxious-leaning pers ...more
Noah
Mar 10, 2013 Noah rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wasn't quite what I was expecting, there was less science and more practical advice. I don't think I got as much out of it as some people might (omg if you actually try to make your partner jealous and you are not in middle school, read this book asap), but I think the overall framework they presented is a useful concept.

By classifying folks as anxious, secure and avoidant and not attaching any value judgments to those relationship styles, I think that is helpful for everyone. Sort of like how r
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Laura Vanderslice Ratzel
Overall, I thought this book was well written, supported by good research and full of helpful insight.

There were a few areas where I was left with questions or disappointments:

1. Why did they leave out disorganized attachment? It wasn't even included as a style.

2. I really appreciated the way they approached anxious attachment - describing it as an evolutionarily adaptive strategy, which should be embraced and used rather than changed or suppressed. Avoidant attachment was also described as e
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Ann
Nov 18, 2012 Ann rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This is what I get for not properly vetting my interlibrary loan requests. Contrary to what I thought I was checking out, this is not a popular science non-fiction-type book about the psychology of adult attachment. This is a self-help book, which now that I re-read the subtitle, is clear before even opening the book. Mea culpa.

Ok, but dating sucks and is generally demoralizing and I can think of about a million other unpleasant activities in which I'd rather engage, so I gave it a quick read/sk
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Alison
Jan 07, 2014 Alison rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: didn-t-finish
2.5 stars. Didn't finish. It wasn't bad or anything, I guess it just wasn't for me. I was very interested in attachment theory when I studied psych so I was curious to see how it might translate to adult relationships. What I didn't realize was that this is basically a self-help book for people who are having problems in romantic relationships. I thought the 'help you find love' thing would be an afterthought, but it was actually the whole point. Nothing wrong with that, it just wasn't what I wa ...more
Jen
Dec 01, 2010 Jen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
(Mid-read: Part self-help and part research. I'm digging the ideas about adult attachment so far, and using it as a catalyst to reflect on the patterns between my partner and me.)

After finishing it, I would recommend this book to anyone interested in attachment research, especially what it means for adult relationships and how much control one has if early attachment was insecure. Because it gives anecdotes from several couples, and names a lot of actual research (that can be found in the biblio
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Nichole
Aug 09, 2014 Nichole rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: life-changing
I don't even know how to express how life-changing this book was/is for me. I read it in two days, devoured it. I think every person on earth should read this book, it would make all relationships and interactions better, giving us all a common language to use to talk about how we act, what we fear and what we need.

I'm starting to put the lessons into practice, and it's scary. Terrifying! But, I know I'm on the right path and with lots of practice and a little time, I'll be successfully managin
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Maren
Apr 10, 2013 Maren rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kinda skimmed this one. It's a good primer on attachment styles but it is mainly targeted at anxious attachment issues and totally vilifies avoidant attachment issues, without delving much in to why a partner might have formed one or the other style. It's a "avoidant as villian, anxious as victim" narrative that repeats throughout and seems mainly targeted at helping anxiously attached folks. Maybe the authors figured anxiously attached partners are more likely to seek out a book like this but i ...more
Faith
Aug 23, 2011 Faith rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people wanting a relationship, having relationship issues, or interested in adult attachment theory
Recommended to Faith by: Library
This book was such a revelation for me! Before reading it, I was only slightly familiar with attachment theory but after reading it, I can see how attachment theory applies to relationships. Whether you're anxious, secure or avoidant, this helps to explain so many relationship issues people have. Attachment really helped shed a lot of light on the issues in my relationships. I see now that people have different capacities for intimacy. Some people have a need and desire to be close and intimate ...more
Kate Woods Walker
Attached by Amir Levine and Rachel Heller is an extremely quick pop-psychy read filled with magazine-style quizzes, scorecards and geegaws designed to assist with love relationships, but distinguished by a skeleton of very real psychological and social science research on attachment theory.

Levine and Heller's thesis is that we all fall into three categories of attachment style: anxious, secure or avoidant, and the various combinations, with their attendant strengths and pitfalls, constitute the
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Jamila Akkouche
Jul 04, 2013 Jamila Akkouche rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Why do some romantic relationships last a lifetime, while the wick of other romantic relationships quickly burn out and fade away? This is a question I have pondered repeatedly, but with the knowledge and insight I have gained from 'Attached' I have come to a conclusion of deep understanding. The book begins with research on how our main parental attachment figure later influences our adult romantic relationships. The main attachment styles discussed throughout this book are: secure, anxious, an ...more
Doug Luberts
Mar 31, 2012 Doug Luberts rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A friend of mine suggested this to me a few weeks ago, as one of the best relationship books she's read, and it is one of the books I've come across in the self-help/psychology/relationship category. Truthfully, I wish I had this book years ago, but, as the saying goes, when the student is ready the teacher appears...And the right books get put on our bookshelves at the right times.

It basically covers our individual attachment styles (Secure, Anxious, Avoidant) and how we can better recognize ou
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Jen Serdetchnaia
In a culture that scorns dependence and exalts self-reliance, Levine and Heller make the argument for the Dependency Paradox—that the more effectively dependent people are on one another in their inner circle, the more independent and daring they become in the greater world. Or the opposite of Kanye’s central thesis in The Life of Pablo.

The basic premise of Attached is to challenge present-day thinking that dependence is weak and that mastering and controlling our emotions is strong. Not only is
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Farah
Mar 30, 2015 Farah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I had quite an interesting and fulfilling journey with this book over almost 7 months. It assissted me in analysing and unloking many attachment and communication issues both in my past relationships and my current one. I navigated a new path of self discovery, acceptance and development, and i am very grateful for the person who recommended it to me.
Despite the ugly book cover, some over simplified parts, and the only heterosexual assumptions/language across the book, i enjoyed and benefited f
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Chris
Apr 07, 2012 Chris rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Suffers from "Terrible Title Syndrome". Otherwise, good read that distills and explains attachment systems in adults.
Cara
Feb 25, 2014 Cara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: life-changers, life
Looks fascinating, and I really want to read it, but it can't be renewed any more.

...

Picked the book up to take it back to the library and got completely sucked in. Finished with two days to spare!

This book proposes to explain the recurrent relationship disaster I've reenacted for most of my life ( with 1.5 exceptions). The idea is that there are basically three attachment styles, much like the styles babies have of attaching to their mothers: anxious, secure, and avoidant. The authors propose t
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Kaila
Mar 20, 2017 Kaila rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you're avoidant, I hope you're ready to feel REALLY REALLY guilty because you will feel like a shit heel after reading this book.

Source: I feel like a shit heel

What I enjoyed about it the most was that feeling of "YES! That IS exactly what happens! Someone else finally gets it!"

It's a very heteronormative, monogamous book, so it was really interesting to read it through the polyamory lens. They put forward the idea that people can learn to become more "Secure" in their attachment. I hereby de
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Kater Cheek
I almost stopped listening to this in the first half hour, because it sounded like the worst of all possible pop-psych books, where it's mostly a sales-pitch for how this wonderful new science will solve all of your problems. I'd heard things about attachment parenting, most of which make me roll my eyes and/or fume about unrealistic perfectionists who tell you with a straight face how sacrificing 100% of yourself for your squalling infant will eventually be rewarded with unparalleled joy. So: s ...more
Baris Balcioglu
May write a blog on this. Here it is: http://baris72.blogspot.com.tr/2017/0...
Vanessa
Aug 24, 2014 Vanessa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
how come no one told me before? codependency doesn't exist...or at least is overblown "problem" in the self-help marketplace. it is a natural and biological response to be dependent on an intimate partner or caregiver, so of course we will be impacted by the actions, absence, etc of others. that's OKAY! wow! another (along with Wired for Love) validating and positive look at the potential for relationships to offer us support, understanding, and healing in a way our primary caretakers didn't--no ...more
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What's your attachment style? 1 5 Apr 15, 2016 06:44AM  
Key Takeaways 1 6 Dec 21, 2015 06:32AM  
  • Wired for Love: How Understanding Your Partner's Brain and Attachment Style Can Help You Defuse Conflict and Build a Secure Relationship
  • Hold Me Tight: Seven Conversations for a Lifetime of Love
  • And Baby Makes Three: The Six-Step Plan for Preserving Marital Intimacy and Rekindling Romance After Baby Arrives
  • Conscious Loving: The Journey to Co-Committment
  • Waking the Tiger: Healing Trauma: The Innate Capacity to Transform Overwhelming Experiences
  • The Mindful Therapist: A Clinician's Guide to Mindsight and Neural Integration
  • A Secure Base: Parent-Child Attachment and Healthy Human Development
  • We: Understanding the Psychology of Romantic Love
  • Becoming Attached: First Relationships and How They Shape Our Capacity to Love
  • Loneliness: Human Nature and the Need for Social Connection
  • Trauma and the Body: A Sensorimotor Approach to Psychotherapy
  • The Journey from Abandonment to Healing: Turn the End of a Relationship into the Beginning of a New Life
  • Meditations to Change Your Brain
  • The Addictive Personality: Understanding the Addictive Process and Compulsive Behavior
  • Sexual Intelligence: What We Really Want from Sex--and How to Get It
  • Love Factually: 10 Proven Steps from I Wish to I Do
  • Couple Skills: Making Your Relationship Work

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“If you're still in a relationship, remember that just because you can get along with anyone doesn't mean you have to. If you're unhappy after having tried every way to make things work, chances are that you should move on. It's in your best interest to end a dysfunctional relationship rather than get stuck forever with the wrong person just because you're secure.” 16 likes
“Oxytocin, a hormone and neuropeptide ... plays a major role in attachment processes and serves several purposes: It causes women to go into labor, strengthens attachment, and ... [increases] trust and cooperation. We get a boost of oxytocin in our brain during orgasm and even when we cuddle -- which is why it's been tagged the "cuddle hormone." How is oxytocin related to conflict reduction? Sometimes we spend less quality time with our partner -- especially when other demands on us are pressing. However, neuroscience findings suggest that we should change our priorities. By forgoing closeness with our partners, we are also missing our oxytocin boost -- making us less agreeable to the world around us and more vulnerable to conflict.” 13 likes
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