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Evidence suggesting the concept of the unconscious includes
states of mind that are outside awareness and include both cognitive and emotional process, and memories.
- Threatening or painful thoughts and feelings are excluded from awareness.
- -Uses for Behavior: One of the most important Freudian processes, it is the basis of many other ego defenses and of neurotic disorders. Freud explained repression as an involuntary removal of something from consciousness. It is assumed that most of the painful events of the first 5 or 6 years of life are buried; yet these events do influence later behavior.
- Going back to an earlier phase of development when there were fewer demands.
- -Uses for Behavior: In the face of severe stress or extreme challenge, individuals may attempt to cope with their anxiety by clinging to immature and inappropriate behaviors. For example, children who are frightened in school may indulge in infantile behavior such as weeping, excessive dependence, thumb sucking, hiding, or clinging to the teacher.
- Attributing to others one’s own unacceptable desires and impulses.
- -Uses for Behavior: This is a mechanism of self-deception. Lustful, aggressive, or other impulses are seen as being possessed by “those people out there, but not by me.”
- “Closing one’s eyes” to the existence of a
- threatening aspect of reality.
- -Uses for Behavior: Denial of reality is perhaps the simplest of all self-defense mechanism. It is a way of distorting what the individual thinks, feels, or perceives in a traumatic situation. This mechanism is similar to repression, yet it generally operates at preconscious and conscious levels.
- Manufacturing “good” reasons to explain away a
- bruised ego.
- -Uses for Behavior: Rationalization helps justify specific behaviors, and it aids in softening the blow connected with disappointments. When people do not get positions they have applied for their work, they think of logical reasons they did not succeed, and they sometimes attempt to convince themselves that they really did not want the position anyway.
- Oral (0-1)
- Anal (1-3)
- Phallic (3-6)
- Latecny (6-12)
Sucking at mother’s breast satisfies need for food and pleasure. Infant needs to get basic nurturing, or later feelings of greediness and acquisitiveness may develop. Oral fixations result from deprivation of oral gratification in infancy. Later personality problems can include mistrust of others, rejecting others; love and fear of or inability to form intimate relationships.
Anal zone becomes a major significance in formation of personality. Main developmental task include learning independence, accepting personal power, and learning to express negative feelings, such as rage and aggression. Parental discipline patterns and attitudes have significant consequences for child’s later personality development.
Basic conflict centers on unconscious incestuous desires that child develops for parents of opposite sex and that, because of their threatening nature, are repressed. Male phallic stage known as Oedipus complex, involves mother as love object for boy. Female phallic stage, known as Electra complex, involves girl’s striving for father’s love and approval. How parents respond, verbally and nonverbally, to child’s emerging sexuality has an impact on sexual attitudes and feelings the child develops.
After the torment of sexual impulses of preceding years, this period is relatively quiescent. Sexual interests are replaced by interest in school, playmates, sports, and a range of new activities. This is a time of socialization as child turns outward and forms relationships with others.