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Abstract

Sexuality and aggression emerge in the second year of life as important motivational systems that organize substantial aspects of the toddler's behavior, affecting the operation of the attachment system and transforming the parents' perceptions and behaviors toward the child. The interconnection between different motivational systems in the parent and child is discussed as an important dimension in broadening our understanding of attachment in the context of the caregiving system. Normative and clinical examples are presented to illustrate how aggression and sexuality affect attachment and caregiving behaviors and representations in toddlerhood.