On the Twilight Saga

Vampires and Werewolves Aren't So Different After All

Parallel Patterns of Attachment in Edward and Jacob

By Jennifer L. Rosner, Amanda M. Vicary

Edward and Jacob’s behavior toward Bella throughout the Twilight Saga is objectively pretty puzzling: How does Edward go from being cold and aloof to warm and loving toward Bella so quickly in the beginning of Twilight? If he really loves her, how can he leave her? How is Jacob capable of avoiding Bella for a period of time by ignoring her phone calls and evading her visits when he, too, claims to love her? Jacob even goes so far as to behave downright coldheartedly toward her when she tries to confront him about his distant behavior–vastly different from the compassion and loyalty he previously exhibited toward Bella. Bella herself is frequently confused by their mood swings. And though we eventually learn of their motives and understand their choices, the question remains: Are the two boys inherently closed off and difficult creatures? Or are they being more themselves when they are attentive and protective toward Bella?

One way to answer this question is by using an area of psychology called “attachment theory,” which suggests that the way parents treat their children at a young age can affect how those children relate to people for the rest of their lives. By considering the types of relationships both Edward and Jacob experienced within their families while growing up, as well as their unique nature (that is, being a vampire and werewolf, respectively), we can start to understand Edward’s and Jacob’s distant (and sometimes cruel) words and behaviors. Additionally, reviewing their histories can give us  …

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