Unformatted text preview: RUNNING HEAD: ERIKSON’S STAGES OF DEVELOPMENT 1 Erik Erikson’s Stages Psychosocial of Development Elizabeth R Small Husson University ERIKSON’S STAGES OF DEVELOPMENT 2 Abstract This project involves research about Erik Erikson’s eight stages of psychosocial development throughout life. The stages of development start at birth, and end at death. Every stage includes a psychosocial crisis which may have a positive or negative outcome. To pass one stage, someone needs to overcome the one they are in. The goal of this project is to identify and describe each stage of development defined by Erikson. I then related the different stages to my life, my mother’s life, and my grandmother’s life. ERIKSON’S STAGES OF DEVELOPMENT 3 Erikson’s Eight Stages of Development Introduction Erik Erikson studied the stages of development, and made a p sychoanalytic theory of psychosocial development that corresponded with eight stages of development. Each stage of development came with a different conflict. Erikson mainly focuses on the ego as opposed to Freud’s id and superego, showing through his eight stages of development, the development of personality throughout one’s life. He proposed that personality develops in a predetermined order, and based his stages of development on that principle. Erikson believed that a crisis occurred at each stage. If a person was able to overcome the crisis, then they were on the path to a healthy personality, and onto the next stage of development. During the first stage of development, an infant, between birth and 18 months, goes through the crisis of trust vs. mistrust. During trust vs. mistrust, an infant is uncertain about the world they live in. Their primary caregiver either teaches them to trust, or causes them feelings of mistrust. By being successful in this stage, the infant learns how the virtue of hope in Erikson’s theory can teach them how to move onto the next stage. If they are successful, then they go forward feeling as though they have support to further them in life. If an infant fails to create this bond with a caregiver the development of fear occurs. During the second stage of development called early childhood, between 18 months and 3 years, a child goes through the crisis of autonomy vs. shame and doubt. During this stage, a child is rapidly developing both physically and mentally. As the child becomes more mobile, they become more independent. A child will start to choose clothing and toys for themselves, and learn that they have choices in life. Skills such as putting on clothes with little help, and picking ERIKSON’S STAGES OF DEVELOPMENT 4 out which toy they would like to play with show the child’s growing autonomy. Erikson states that during this stage, it is critical for a parent to support their child while also encouraging independence. This creates the virtue of will. If children are encouraged to be independent at this stage, they learn to be confident in their ability to progress through life. On the flip side, if children are overly controlled or not given the opportunities to learn how to fend for themselves, then they can feel a sense of shame and doubt about where they stand in the world and the abilities they they possess. During the third stage of development called the play age, between three years and six years of age, a child goes through the crisis of initiative vs, guilt. During this stage, a child is learning how to interact and play with others. Children learn how to make up games and activities, teaching them how to take initiative and become leaders later on in life. If the child is admonished or controlled to greatly, they can feel as though they are a bother to other children, and feel guilty leading them to become followers. During this stage, the virtue of purpose comes about because a child is more curious about the world around them. During the fourth stage of development called the school age stage, between the ages of six years and 12 years of age, a child goes through the crisis of industry vs. inferiority. During this stage, a child starts going to school and learns how to read and write. Peers and teachers become a major part of the child’s life. Now, a child will feel as though they need to win approval from their peers. At this point, children perform activities with their peers, and if successful with them, they begin to feel industrious and prideful of their accomplishments. Opposingly, if the child does not achieve what they were setting out to do, ex. Not completing a math problem in an allotted amount of time while all the other students already finished, may ERIKSON’S STAGES OF DEVELOPMENT 5 lead to them feeling inferior. During this stage, the virtue of competence comes about. According to Erikson, children need to have a certain amount of failure in order to develop modesty in life. During the fifth stage of development called the adolescence stage, between 12 and 18 years, a child goes through the crisis of identity vs. role confusion. Adolescents are in search of self identity and who they are in life. This stage is the inbetween time where children are turning into adults. During this stage, a child starts looking into their future to determine what they may want to do with the rest of their lives, and who they want to be in it. This is a time where children are going through puberty, and their bodies and minds are changing. Children may be confused by the role they serve in society, and how they will fit in. The virtue of fidelity occurs during this stage of development. Fidelity ultimately means that children at this stage are learning how to commit themselves to someone or something else. During the sixth stage of development called young adulthood, between 18 and 40 years of age, adults go through the crisis of intimacy vs. isolation. People begin to get more intimate with others. They begin to create deeper relationships with significant others and form lifelong bonds with people. Intimacy leads to being able to continue to create meaningful relationships with others throughout life. If someone is unable to become intimate with other people, it leads to the feeling of isolation. If someone feels isolated, they can feel alone in the world, and may be more likely to fear commitment and be depressed. During this stage, the virtue of love comes about. During the seventh stage of development called middle adulthood, between 40 and 65 years of age, adults go through the crisis of generativity vs. stagnation. During this stage, people settle down with their families and are raising their children, or have settled into a career path ERIKSON’S STAGES OF DEVELOPMENT 6 that they follow until retirement. People begin to develop a sense of there being more to the world than just them. Adults give back to society by passing down their knowledge of the world to younger generations, being a productive citizen, and putting in their time at work. By doing these things, it helps adults to stay active in their lives. If an adult does not continue to stay active and help promote growth of younger generations, they can feel stagnation. During this stage, the virtue of care forms. During the eighth stage of development called late adulthood, between 65 years and death, senior citizens go through the crisis of integrity vs. despair. During this stage, people tend to slow life down and retire from their jobs. Senior citizens have a time of life review, and look back on their past accomplishments, feeling integrity if they successfully met their goals throughout life. The feeling of despair comes about when people look back on life, and feel as though they were not able to achieve what they wanted to. This can lead to hopelessness and depression during the late years. During this stage, the virtue of wisdom is obtained, and many elders share the wisdom they have learned throughout life. I was able to relate Erikson’s eight stages of development back to myself. I know I passed stage one because I can have trusting relationships with people in my life, signifying that my caregivers gave me enough care as an infant. Stage two was also passed, because, at this stage, my parents were able to give me enough independence to build autonomy. Stage three was also passed, and I know this because I am able to start projects now. Stage four was passed, and I know this because my caregivers gave me support to finish the tasks that I started. I know that I passed stage five because throughout adolescence, I was able to explore my interests without hindrance, and that allowed me to have a sense of self identity. For me, stage six is still ongoing. ERIKSON’S STAGES OF DEVELOPMENT 7 I feel as though that when the time comes, I will be able to pass this stage because I am able to have intimate relationships with people I trust. Stage seven and eight do not apply to me yet. My mother was interviewed for this project to see how she progressed through Erikson’s psychosocial stages of development. My mom was able to complete stage one, and I know this because she has a very trusting personality, so her parents gave her enough care as an infant for her to have trust in others. My mom was also able to pass stage two, because her parents gave her the support to explore her surroundings during early childhood, helping her become autonomous. Stage three was passed, and I know this because my mom loves to start projects. She enjoys thinking them out and putting them in action, so her parents gave her the support to venture out of her comfort zone growing up, and allowed her to do things on her own. My mom did not pass stage four. I know this because she struggles with finishing projects she puts in motion. She also feels inferior to people at times. Stage five was passed, because my mom was encouraged at this stage to form her own opinions, allowing her to create a self identity. My mom was able to pass stage six. I know this because she is married to my dad, and has been for 25 years. She was able to create intimate relationships with those around her, and continues to do so. Stage seven is ongoing for my mom. She gives back by working as an occupational therapist in the public school system, and her and my father also foster children. Stage eight does not apply to her yet. My grandma was interviewed for this project to see how she progressed through Erikson’s psychosocial stages of development. My grandma completed stage one, and I know this because she is trusting, so her parents gave her enough care as an infant for her to have trust in others. She was also able to pass stage two, because her parents gave her the support to ERIKSON’S STAGES OF DEVELOPMENT 8 explore her surroundings during early childhood, helping her become autonomous. Stage three was not passed, because when she was growing up, girls were treated differently. Her parents were not as supportive and did not encourage her to try new things. My grandma did not pass stage four. Because she did not pass stage three, she struggled with finishing things because she struggled with starting them. She also feels inferior to people at times. Stage five was passed, because my grandma was encouraged at this stage to form her own opinions, allowing her to create a self identity. My grandma was able to pass stage six. I know this because she was married to my grandfather for 30 years before her died, and got remarried at the age of 68. She was able to create intimate relationships with those around her, and continues to do so. Stage was passed. I know this because my grandma goes to church groups to help people grieving the loss of their spouses, and also goes to nursing homes to talk to residents there. My grandma is currently in stage eight. She tries to stay busy and has a positive outlook on life. She said that she does not have many regrets, and is happy with where she is now. Methods The participants for the experiment were myself and my mom. I am 19 years old and a student at Husson University. My mom is 48 years old and is an Occupational Therapist. My grandma is 76 years old and is a retired receptionist. For my information, I looked back on my life to see if I passed the steps, and how I passed them. For my mom, I interviewed her, and asked her questions that pertained to each stage of development. For my grandma, I interviewed her as well. I collected my data on Erikson’s stages through the internet. ERIKSON’S STAGES OF DEVELOPMENT 9 Results: Erik Erikson’s Stages of Development Stage Psychosocia
l Crisis Age Myself Parent Grandparent 1 Trust vs. Mistrust Birth 18 months (infancy) Trust Trust I know that my My mom passed this stage caregivers met my needs because she is very trusting of as a baby, because now I people, meaning she got have good, healthy enough c are a s a n infant. relationships where I c an trust people. Trust My grandma passed this stage because she is very trusting of people, meaning she got e nough care a s a n infant. 2 Autonomy vs. Shame and Doubt 18 months 3 (early childhood) Autonomy My parents gave me the opportunity to e xperience life a nd be independent without hovering too much, a llowing me to be the independent person I am today. Autonomy My grandma passed this stage because she has autonomy, so her parents gave her e nough opportunity to e xperience the world a round her. 3 Initiative vs. Guilt 3 6 (play a ge) Initiative Initiative Guilt My c aregivers a llowed My mom has lots of initiative My grandma did not pass me to e xplore a nd try to start projects, a nd therefore I this stage, because her new things a t this stage, can a ssume that her parents parents were very strict and now I have initiative gave her the support to try with her,a nd did not that motivates me to start different things growing up. allow her to try many things. things a t this stage. 4 Industry vs. Inferiority 6 12 (school a ge) Industry Inferiority Inferiority My c aregivers My mom sometimes has a hard Because my grandma did encouraged me to finish time finishing a task, a nd c an not pass the previous the tasks I started, a nd I feel inferior to people a t times, stage, she s truggled with passed this stage getting so she did not pass this stage. passing this stage in a sense of industry development. instead of inferiority because I a m c onfident that I c an finish tasks. 5 Identity vs. Role Confusion 12 18 (adolescence) Identity Throughout my adolescence, I was encouraged to e xplore my interests, a nd I was Autonomy My mom passed this stage because she has a utonomy, so her parents gave her e nough opportunity to e xperience the world a round her. Identity My mom has a sense of identity a nd was e ncouraged to form her own opinions, allowing her to pass this stage. Identity My grandma passed this stage, a nd has a very strong sense of identity. ERIKSON’S STAGES OF DEVELOPMENT 10 able to c reate a sense of identity, a llowing me to pass the stage. 6 Intimacy vs.
Isolation 18 40 (young adulthood) Intimacy I a m c onfident that I c an pass stage when the time comes, because I feel a s though I c an be intimate and be myself a round people I trust. 7 Generativity vs. Stagnation 40 65 (middle adulthood) Not Applicable 8 Integrity vs. Despair 65 death (late adulthood) Not Applicable Intimacy My mom has had many successful relationships in her life, including with my father, and she passed this stage because she was a ble to be intimate with other people. Intimacy My grandma passed this stage, a nd has had many successful relationships. She has been married twice, a nd has had six children. Generativity Generativity My mom spent time working My grandma is a very in the school system a s a n O.T. active person. She c reated to help c hildren, a nd her a nd a walking group, a nd met my father foster c hildren. She her second husband a t 68 is c urrently in this stage. years old. Not Applicable Integrity My grandma has a very positive outlook on life, and she seems very content with the way her life is going. Discussion For my project, my results were relatively conclusive. I have passed every stage so far during my psychosocial development. I can see how this affected me because I feel as though I have all those aspects of my life in order. My parents gave me opportunities to grow as a child, and that made me who I am today. For my mom, she seems to be in order also. Although she did not pass the fourth stage, she was able to pass the other stages after this one. I can see, from loving with her, that she continues to struggle with finishing projects. For my grandma, she did not pass every stage. During her development, times were different. Girls that were growing up ERIKSON’S STAGES OF DEVELOPMENT 11 during her era had different expectations, and therefore she was treated differently than I was growing up. She struggled with the third and fourth stages of development. I was surprised that my grandmother did not pass the third and fourth stages of development because she seems to have herself together. When I interviewed her, I realized that she does, in fact, struggle with these stages to this day. Erik Erikson’s eight stages of psychosocial development start at birth, and end at death. He believed that childhood is very important in personality development (Davis, Clifton, 1995). Parents also play major roles in psychosocial development, because they are the people that shape infants and children into who they are today. Every stage includes a psychosocial crisis which may have a positive or negative outcome. To get to the next stage of development, someone has to pass the stage they are currently in. ERIKSON’S STAGES OF DEVELOPMENT 12 References McLeod, S. (2008). Erik Erikson. Retrieved from Erikson.html Davis, D., & Clifton, A. (1995). Psychosocial Theory: Erikson. Retrieved from ...
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