During the past two decades an explosion of interdisciplinary research, especially in developmental neuroscience, has transformed and deepened our understanding of how the seminal social emotional events of infancy indelibly impact, for better or worse, all later stages of human development. In this article I briefly summarise my contributions in regulation theory towards that effort. After describing a current paradigm shift in the developmental sciences, I present an overview of my ongoing studies on the interpersonal neurobiology of the mother–infant attachment relationship. I offer research which indicates that optimal attachment experiences facilitate the experience-dependent maturation of the early developing ‘emotional’ right brain and thereby a predisposition for emotional wellbeing in later stages of life. I conclude with thoughts about the application of regulation theory for early intervention and prevention programs, as well as some larger implications for family law, cultural and political systems, and human capital formation.