Chapter 12 Psychosocial development in Adolescence
Erikson: Identify versus Identity Confusion • During adolescence begins to sense a feeling of own identity. • Becomes aware of individual characteristics, likes/dislikes, anticipates goals for future • Strength and purpose to control one’s own destiny • Time of life to define what one is at the present and what one wants to be in the future. • The activating agent is the Ego: Formation of the Ego in its conscious and unconscious aspects.
Ego has capacity to select and integrate talents, aptitudes, and skills in identification with likeminded people & in adaptation to the social environment, and to maintain defenses against threats and anxiety, as it learns to decide what impulses, needs, and roles are most appropriate and effective. • Thus, the psychosocial identity is formed • Due to difficult transition from childhood to adulthood, and of sensitivity to social and historical change, the adolescent is likely to suffer more deeply than ever before or ever again from a confusion or roles, or Identity Confusion.
This can cause one to feel isolated, empty, anxious, and indecisive. • Feels like must make important decisions, but unable to do so. • Adolescents may feel society is pushing them to make decisions, thus becoming more resistant. • Deeply concerned with how others view them, apt to display a lot of self-consciousness and embarrassment. • May feel like regressing rather than progressing • Periodical retreat to childishness appears to be a pleasant alternative to complex involvement with adult world.
Adolescents behavior is inconsistent and unpredictable during this chaotic state. • One moment, has inner reservation not to commit to anyone in fear of being rejected, disappointed, or misled; next moment may want to be a follower, lover, or disciple, no matter the consequence.
Identity Crisis: necessity to resolve the transitory failure to form a stable identity, or a confusion of roles. • Each successive stage is a potential crisis • Identity crisis can seem particularly dangerous because the whole future of the individual as well as the next generation appears to depend on it. • Negative Identity: particularly disturbing • This is a sense of possessing a set of potential bad or unworthy characteristics; deal with by projecting unto others
Such projection may result in social pathology including prejudice and crime, and discrimination, but is an important part of adolescent’s readiness for ideological involvement. • The virtue of Fidelity develops. • Sexually mature and in many ways responsible, not yet ready or adequately prepared to become a parent. • Ego balance is challenged: on one hand, expected to assimilate into adult life pattern; on other hand, must deny sexual freedom of adult
Behavior shuttles back and forth from impulsive, thoughtless, sporadic actions, to that of compulsive restraint. • During this time, youth seeks an inner knowledge and understanding of him/herself and attempts to formulate a set of values: this is Fidelity. • Fidelity is the ability to sustain loyalties freely pledged in spite of the inevitable contradictions of value systems. • Fidelity is the foundation upon which a continuous sense of identity is formed (sustained loyalty, faith, sense of belonging to a loved one or friends/companions
Acquired through the “confirmation” of ideologies and truths, and also thru affirmation of companions. • Evolution of identity based on human’s inherent need to feel that he or she belongs to some particular or kind of people. (ethnic, religious) • The youth’s identity gives definition to his/her environment. • The ritualization concurrent with the adolescent stage is that of Ideology. • Ideology: the solidarity of conviction that incorporates ritualizations from previous life stages into a coherent set of ideas and ideals. The estrangement that results from a lack of any integrated ideology is Identity Confusion.
Perversion: of the ideology ritualization that may occur is Totalism: the frantic and exclusive preoccupation with what seems to be unquestionable right or ideal. • Genital Stage *******A sense of role identity must develop, especially in terms of selecting a vocation or future career.
Crisis of Identity (Erikson) • The adolescent is faced with the task of developing an acceptable, functional and stable self-concept. Those that succeed, according to Erickson, will establish a sense of identity and those who fail will suffer role confusion. • The sense of identity is experienced as a sense of psychological well-being.
Crisis of Identity (Erikson) • Its most obvious concomitants are a “feeling of being at home in one’s body, a sense of knowing where one is going, and an inner assuredness of anticipated recognition from those who count”. • In other words, the adolescent needs to maintain a connection with the past, establish relative stable goals for the future, and keep up adequate interpersonal relationships in the present in order to feel that they have an identity. • The adolescent needs to integrate a conscious sense of individual uniqueness with an unconscious striving for continuity of experience.
Resolution of the Identity Crisis Other psychologists: The resolution of the identity crisis depends greatly upon the adolescent’s society, family, and peer groups. Ideally, adolescents achieve their new identity by abandoning some of the values and aspirations set forth by their parents and society, while at the same time accepting others
Resolution of the Identity Crisis If they fail at this task, they will develop a premature identity.This is known asforeclosure. Other adolescents may experienceidentity confusion, and find themselves committed to a few goals or values and apathetic about searching for their own identity. And some individuals may even adopt anegative identity, one that is opposite to what they were expected to adopt.
Marcia: Identity Status • Identity Achievement • Crisis leading to commitment • Foreclosure • Commitment without crisis • Moratorium • Crisis with no commitment yet • Identity Confusion • No commitment, No crisis
Marcia: 4 identity statuses Identities differ according to the presence or absence of crisis Crisis: period of conscious decision making and commitment to a personal investment in an occupation or system of beliefs (ideology). Erikson also as these as crucial to forming identity. Relationships between identity status and such characteristics as anxiety, self-esteem, moral reasoning, and patterns of behavior. Table 12-2 (page 393)
Marcia: 4 identity statuses Identity achievement(crisis leading to commitment): Made choices and expresses strong commitment to them. People with this have more maturity and are more socially competent. Parents encourage autonomy and connection with teachers; differences explored within context of maturity. High levels of ego development, moral reasoning, self-certainty, self-esteem, performance, and intimacy.
Marcia: 4 identity statuses Foreclosure (commitment without crisis): Did not explore possible choices, adopts choices of others. Rigid in opinions are questioned. Follows, not leads. Parents overly involved and avoid expressing differences. Highest levels of authoritarianism and stereotypical thinking, obedience to authority, dependent relationships, low level of anxiety.
Marcia: 4 identity statuses Moratorium(crisis without commitment yet): anxious and fearful, but self-confident. Resists parent’s authority. Not yet developed close relationship (boy/girlfriend). Will likely succeed and make commitments and achieve identity. Teen often involved in an ambivalent struggle with parental authority. Most anxious and fearful of success; highest levels of ego development, moral reasoning and self-esteem.
Marcia: 4 identity statuses Identity diffusion(no commitment, no crisis): not seriously considered options. Avoided commitments. Unsure of self and uncooperative with others. Parents do not discuss future with him; tend to be unhappy and often lonely. Parents are laissez-faire in children’s attitudes; rejecting or not available to children. Mixed results, low levels of ego development, moral reasoning, cognitive complexity, and self-certainty; poor cooperative abilities.
Gender differences in identity formation Erikson- women development identity and intimacy together. Gilligan disagrees- female sense of self develops through achieving separate identity through establishing relationships. Girls judge themselves on their handling responsibilities and on their ability to care for others as well as for themselves. Others believe that differences between males/females less so.
Ethnic factors • Cultural differences also may exist. • Half of minorities were diffuse/foreclosed- involving a lack of exploration of ethnicity. Other half in either moratorium or achieved identity. • Hispanic- highly conscious of prejudice against their group • Asians- struggled with pressures for academic success • African American girls- aware not meeting standards of beauty • African American boys- concerned about job discrimination and negative social image of black males. • 1/5 had negative attitudes of own race
Sexuality • Seeing self as sexual being • Recognizing one’s sexual orientation • Addressing sexual urges • Forming romantic relationships/sexual attachments • All necessary for sexual identity!
Sexual orientation and identity • Begins in adolescence • Homosexuality is universal • In one study, (7-12 graders) only 1% identified themselves as being homosexual; 11% unsure; stigmas likely skewed the data • In past, homosexuality considered mental illness; No association found to support this • Many young people have had homosexual experiences before age 15 Partly genetic; not found however, perfect concordance in identical twins
Sexual orientation and identity • Hostility often demonstrated towards those teens who show homosexual behavior. • May fear parent’s and other’s reactions, also may be difficult finding and identifying potential same-sex partner. • Social pressure and experimentation also factors.
One model: • Awareness of same-sex attraction • Same-sex behaviors (ages 12-15) • Identification as gay/lesbian (ages 15-18) • Disclosure to others (ages 17-19) • Development of same-sex relationships (ages 18-20) • However, gay men may feel more comfortable disclosing earlier • Possible abuse, sexual abuse, neglect may also play a factor. • Also, a choice.
Sexual behavior • Average age first sexual experience: • Girls- age 17 • Boys- age 16 • 34% of 9th graders; 61% of 12th graders • African Americans and Latinos may begin earlier • In 2002- 47% boys/girls ages 15-19 reported having sex Main reasons not having sex: • Against religious beliefs • Avoiding pregnancy
Sexual risk taking • Sexually transmitted diseases (STDS) (Table 12-4 (page 449))- some curable, some not! • Pregnancy Most at risk: • Young first experience, multiple partners, failure to use contraceptives, inadequate sex information (14%) • Socioeconomically disadvantaged communities • Substance use • Antisocial behavior • Association with deviant peers
Peer group most influential • 1/3 give into peer pressure Remember, that intercourse, oral, and anal sex can transmit STDS • Contraceptives: why use/not use- ignorance • Teenage mothers, who are often under more stress than adult mothers, are more likely to abuse their child.
Most Prevalent STDs • HPV • Trichomoniasis • Genital Herpes Simplex • Chlamydia and gonorrhea (both curable)
Why Adolescents Fail to Use Birth Control • due to moral or religious values and beliefs • belief that sex should be spontaneous and unplanned, therefore, no time for birth control • ignorance about reproductive matters, anatomy, pregnancy
4. belief in myths • won’t get pregnant the first time • cant get pregnant during the period • misunderstanding the rhythm method • pulling out always works • certain positions prevent pregnancy • belief that they have to be a certain age to become pregnant • use of someone else’s birth control • place responsibility on the woman or man, but fails to accept responsibility for self • belief that they are ready to be parents; possibly promised to be married
rape/incest will not result in pregnancy • leave it up to God! Condoms are the best protection! Sex information: Tend to get from friends, parents, sex education in school, media. Those who can discuss contraception with parents have more positive attitudes toward safe sex
Teenage pregnancy • Decrease in teenage pregnancy • Many of these girls are sexually inexperienced • Often history of abuse, sexual abuse, experienced divorce, domestic violence, substance abuse, household with mental illness or criminalty • Poor prognosis for teen mothers • Education suffers, impoverished, not access prenatal care, fetal alcohol syndrome, poor diet, abuse/neglect of child
Relationships with Family, Peers, & Adult Society • Peers become the role model; spend less time with family • Fundamental values- tend to remain close to family and religion • Adolescent rebellion- not as common as thought
Adolescents & Parents • Important to address fine line of enough independence and protecting from immature judgment • Family conflicts tend to focus on day-to-day things- chores, homework, curfews, dating versus values • Most intense during middle adolescence • Authoritative parenting is best style!- insist on rules, norms, values, but willing to listen, explain, and negotiate! Results in more self-discipline and fewer behavioral problems.
Adolescents & Parents • Single mothers- no negative impact on children/teens • Quality of home life and mothers education most important! • Psychological and behavioral problems tend to occur before the breakup; if remained married with problems, more problems for children. • Parental cohabitation may be problematic for teens • Quality of relationship with parents and parent’s quality time most important for health
Adolescents and Siblings Less close to siblings, less influenced by them and become more distanced as move through adolescence; independence as part of maturity occurs
Adolescents and Peers • A lot of peer influence, both good and bad • Source of affection, sympathy • Understanding • Moral guidance • A place for experimentation • Setting for achieving autonomy and independence from parents • Place to form intimate relationships
Adolescents and Peers • Importance of spending time with friends crucial • Stress intimacy, loyalty, sharing helps transition to adulthood • Capacity for intimacy related to psychological adjustment and social competence Cliques • Can isolate or link together
Romantic relationships • Intimacy not same as sex, though many adolescents confuse these • Break-ups result in depression and suicide • Can be romantic partners, companions, friends who engage in intimacy, affection, mutual cooperation, nurturance, sex, care • Sex can be misused
Adolescents & Delinquency • Impacted by parental practices • Peer deviance • Community/neighborhood • Genetics • Parents shape prosocial or antisocial behavior in response to child’s emotional needs • Fail to reinforce good behavior or were harsh or inconsistent in punishing misbehavior
Adolescents & Delinquency • May believe child intended to misbehave when in reality related to maturity • Allow child to get their own way via acting out • Children with behavioral problems: • Do poorly in school • Not get along with classmates • Unpopular, underachievers • Aggressive • Have few prosocial friends
Adolescents & Delinquency • The way they talk, laugh, smirk about rule-breaking/deviance results in delinquent pride • Elicit ineffective parenting To deal with: Discourage antisocial peers Improve parenting