Furthermore, these mental developments are affected by the environment and the events in a person’s life as they grow from childhood to adulthood. The observation was also that if these stages are not successfully crossed, then there is likely to be a deficiency in the later stages where they will come back as a problem (Scheck 05). Erickson’s work was greatly influenced by Freud even though Erickson emphasized on the ego and the crisis that is likely to occur in each stage about the ego as compared to Freud who mainly examined the id and the superego. Erickson’s theory proposes that the ego develops well as it solves the crises at each stage of development. In the end, an individual learns to trust others, promotes a sense of identity in the community and then helps in creating a better place for the next generation.
Erickson clarifies that success in this stage builds the virtue of hope in a person so that they believe that even though there is a crisis, there are people who will always be there to help them. The opposite of this is a case where the caregivers do not help the child go through this stage. For example, a child who has been brought up by harsh caregivers who are unpredictable. Along with this if the child’s caregivers are not meeting the needs at all or partially, such a child grows to lack trust and the virtue of hope is not developed. In the end, a child lacks confidence in the world; they consider the world cruel and unpredictable. These activities are indicators that a child is developing the abilities to be independent and gaining autonomy.
The role of the parent here is to be a supportive parent by giving a child room to try the thing on their own and also to the only come in when the child needs help or when the child cannot perform tasks. Additionally, there is a need for constant assurance from the parent which encourages a child to gain autonomy, handling problems alone and getting solutions (Scheck 06, 09). For example, if a child wants to wear cloth, a parent should allow them to try to do it on their own. They can then come in to assist the child if the child asks for help or is defeated. More confidence is built at this stage in life. The parent’s role, in this case, is to encourage children to play and interact.
Creating time for games and getting children tools to use for play is very significant. Supporting a child is also very sensitive. Children also ask many questions since they desire to know more, so parents have to try to answer their questions as much as possible. The role of the parent at this point is to encourage and reinforce the initiatives of the child so that a lot of confidence is built. For example, the parent can always help support the child to engage in competitive sports, allow the child to take up leadership and to practice things that they enjoy doing academically or in recreational sports (Scheck 10, 13). What the parent will notice is that the child works hard to be good and to do right things as they also develop moral behaviors.
They want to gain the approval of others, their parents and guardians. Good practices should at this point be rewarded. The girls, on the other hand, will desire to look more feminine as defined by the society. Therefore, sensitivity to weight and body outlook will be significant. At this stage, the essential question is, “Who Am I and who do I want to be?” (Scheck 13). That question is what prompts the desire to fit in among peers. Having identity among peers to the adolescent is significant because they look at life from what it is to be in the future. Additionally, an individual develops the sense of being themselves and identity is achieved. Lack of successful crossing of this stage may lead to isolation and feeling of angst.
Stage seven: Generativity versus Stagnation This stage is experienced by people aged 40 years to 64 years, and this is the time when people establish careers, get into a relationship and settle down and begin having a family. Being a part of the bigger picture is also a goal that people try to achieve, and this is about trying to be a part of the society to contribute significantly. People desire to raise children and do things that make the generation a better place for the coming age. Mistrust Can I trust the world? Stops feeding 2 to 4 years Will Autonomy vs. Shame Is it okay to be me? Begin training themselves how to use the toilet 4 to 5 years Purpose Initiative vs. Guilt Is it okay for me to do, move, and act? Tries to use tools 5 to 12 years Competence Industry vs.
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