The relationship between human beings and how they transition from the time they are being born to their death is something that is quite ignored. These stages of life matter how we end up relating with each other. It is also key to note that when one stage is skipped it could result to an emotional and social damage of a human being. In this excerpt, we shall dig dip through the case of Judy, a two year old, whose mother is worried that she has not been able to learn to go to the washrooms by her, yet most of her peers have learnt. Her mother is quite concerned with this, since she sent Judy to a daycare. We shall also dig dip on what to expect on each stage that a child should go through especially those between the ages of two to give years.
Psychosocial development is the growth of a human being in all aspects from cognitive to emotional and social from the time they are born to the time of their death. There are various aspects of psychosocial development that are part of the psychosocial development, which the theorist Erik Erikson has clearly outlined. From gaining trust to acquiring the will to do things and eventually having hope, children will be able to have a healthy social development. It is also through following these stages that children are able to acquire skills such as taking care of their toys, going to the toilet, putting on their own clothes and even learning how to shower as the years advance. Parents also play a great role in these stages, since they are supposed to be there to witness the growth of their children. They should also expose their children to their peers who are their age so that they can also socialize and even acquire leadership skills (Persson, 2011).
Theories of Psychosocial Development
The theories behind psychosocial development in children are: (Erikson's Psychosocial Stages of Development, 2018).
Erik Erickson’s Theory
This theory is made up of several stages up to the age of sixty-five years and above. It is believed that failure to pass through those stages could lead to an unhealthy personality and failure to acquire basic virtues. In this context we shall look at the three first stages which are:
- Trust vs. Mistrust– At this point a child is a visitor to the world since this stage is experienced by children who are zero to one and a half years. They thus require someone who makes them feel secure and not threatened.
- Autonomy vs. Shame and doubt– This stage covers children who are one and a half years to three years. At this point, a child is able to discover very many things about themselves, such as developing skills, putting clothes and playing with toys. If children at this stage are supported their self-esteem increases and they become more secure and develop the will to work.
- Initiative vs. Guilt- Parents tend to find their children to be very aggressive and up and about. At this stage, children become more innovative and are initiated towards developing their skills. They also develop the ability to lead others and feel guilty when they fail at particular tasks. If this stage is successful, it leads to the virtue of purpose.
Vygotsky’s social theory
It draws out that learning is a social process, which is a result of the intelligence of human beings in the society. According to this theory, learning takes place in two stages. The first stage involves interacting with others and later diffusing it in the mental structure. The cultural development in a child begins with the social level followed by the individual level. The social level involves people who are interpsychological and when diffused into the mental culture it becomes intrapsychological. (Vygotsky’s Psychosocial Stages of Development, 2018)
The second aspect involves the “zone of proximal development”. It involves more of cognitive development however, for it to be successful there has to be help from an experienced person as well as social interaction.
Bronfenbrenner (sociocultural/ecological development)
It involves the following (Bronfenbrenner, 2009);
This involves the influence over which the immediate environment the child lives in such as the family, caregivers and teachers. The more the child interacts with these people the more the effect they have on their growth.
This involves how the different parts of the microsystem work to ensure the child’s growth. For instance if parents agree on a certain way to raise the child, then an overall and successful growth of the child shall be seen, however if caregivers, parents and teachers direct the child in different ways then the overall growth of the child is messed up.
This involves the outside that the child does not interact with a lot but still has influence over the child. If parents distant themselves from the children it could have a very bad effect on the growth of the child. If the child is left on the hand of the caregivers who often do not meet the needs of the child, they could end up messing with the child’s growth (Purcal, C., Brennan, D., Cass, B., & Jenkins, B. (2014).
This is the largest set of people and things that has influence on a child, such as the government, wars and cultural values. This has a general influence on the child in all aspects.
Bandura (socio-cognitive development)
Bandura believed in ‘reciprocal determinism’ that is the world and a person’s behavior. The behavior defines one’s environment. Bandura considered personality as an interaction between three components, the environment, behavior and psychological processes.
Factors that affect psychosocial Development
Stimulating life environments
These kinds of environments play a major role in influencing the psychosocial development of a child. Studies show that when a child is exposed to a television before the age of two they could end up suffering from stunt growth socially and intellectually (Jackson, 2018).. Availing toys to the child such as dolls and blocks encourages the child to develop a variety of skills that improve their social interaction (Yamauchi, 2009).
This highly influences the social and emotional development of a child, especially during their early years. The brain experiences a dramatic growth and it is during these early years that their brains learn how to respond to stress and form trusting relationships. It is during this stage that they are able to set a foundation for their social development (Nielsen, M. (2018).
Non-normative life events
When children go through unusual events in their lives it becomes a huge distraction to their growth. When children have to deal with situations and circumstances that their parents are going through, such as divorce or death, it becomes quite difficult for them. Other non-normative life events could also make a child fail to differentiate between wrong and right and thus this affects their social and emotional life (Shultz & Kuipers, 2011).
Relation between psychosocial development and the case study
Julie, who is averagely two years, has been highly affected by the people directing her life. Her mother and her caregivers are part of her upbringing. As aforementioned, in the Bronfenbrenner theory, under the Mesosystem, different people who bring up the child could have a huge influence on the growth of the child. The fact that Julie is brought up by two different groups highly affects her to the point that she is not able to train herself to go to the toilet. In addition, Julie is not able to spend ample time with her mother; she should at least go once to the daycare so that her mother is able to train her accordingly.
It is very important that parents learn to build trusting relationships with their children in their early years. They should be able to bond as they take the child through each stage to be able to note any stage that has been skipped (Gartland, Donath, MacArthur & Brown, 2012). Parents should also avoid living their children in the hands of caregivers, since some of them could be a threat to the child and thus it becomes difficult for the child to build lasting relationships, which is the most crucial stage for a child (Pretorius & Van, 2014).
In conclusion, it is important that parents should be keen on how their children are able to build lasting relationships with not only them but also their peers. It is key that each person goes through the stages of psychosocial development to avoid having psychological issues later in their lives. Parents should also be aware of the kind of environments they expose their children so as to ensure they have an overall growth.
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