Lifespan psychology module 6.3 and 7.3Presentation Transcript
Chapter 6: Early Adulthood Module 6.3 Social and Personality Development in Early Adulthood
Developmental Tasks of Early Adulthood
Intimacy during Early Adulthood
Young adults’ happiness stems, in part, from their relationships, and many worry about whether or not they are developing serious relationships “on time.”
Even those who are not interested in forming a long-term relationship typically are focused, to some extent, on connecting with others.
Happiness in Early Adulthood
Happiest memories = psychological needs rather than material needs satisfied
Unhappiest memories = basic psychological needs left unfulfilled
Culture influences which psychological needs are most important in determining happiness
According to research on young adults, happiness usually is derived from feelings of independence, competence, self-esteem, or relating well to other people.
Social Clocks of Adulthood
Social Clock - psychological timepiece that records the major milestones in our lives.
Social clocks are culturally determined.
Research - Ravenna Helson:
Found broad patterns of women’s social clocks by studying them at the ages of 21, 27, and 43.
She found that women became more self-displayed and committed over the years.
They felt greater independence and confidence and could cope with stress more effectively.
Many women exhibit traditional feminine behavior from age 21 to 27, finding a spouse, becoming mothers.
As children grew up, women took on less traditional roles.
Women tend to change positively over time.
Helson concluded that the social clock one chooses is not as important as the process of choosing.
Erikson - Intimacy versus Isolation
Intimacy = Close, intimate relationship with others
Isolation = Feelings of loneliness and fearful of relationships
It spans post-adolescence into the early 30s.
Focus is on developing close, intimate relationship with others.
People who experience difficulties at this stage are often lonely and fearful of relationships, perhaps from a failure of the identity stage.
Erikson’s view of healthy intimacy was limited to adult heterosexuality and the goal was to produce children, a view not shared by all developmentalists today.
Maintaining friendships is an important part of adult life, filling a basic need for belongingness.
How do people become our friends?
Proximity – live nearby, work with us.
Similarity – hold similar attitudes and values.
Most adults have same-race friends.
We also choose friends based on personal qualities.
Good sense of humor
Falling in Love
The Progression of Development of Love
Most relationships develop in similar ways:
People meet, interact for long periods of time.
Seek out each other’s company.
Open up more.
Share physical intimacies.
Share positive and negative feelings.
Agree on roles in relationship.
Feel psychological well-being tied to success of relationship.
Their definition of themselves and their behavior changes.
They see themselves and act as a couple, rather than separate individuals.
Falling in Love
STIMULUS-VALUE-ROLE (SVR) THEORY (Murstein), says that relationships proceed in a fixed order of three stages:
Stimulus stage – relationships built on superficial, physical characteristics
Value stage – between second and seventh encounter, relationship characterized by increasing similarity of values and beliefs.
Role stage – relationship built on specific roles played by participants.
Passionate and Companionate Love
PASSIONATE (ROMANTIC LOVE) - state of powerful absorption in someone.
COMPANIONATE LOVE - strong affection we have for those with whom our lives are deeply involved.
LABELING THEORY OF PASSIONATE LOVE
(Hatfield and Berscheid) – Combination of intense physiological arousal and situational cues that indicate that “love” is the appropriate label for what they are experiencing.
The physiological arousal can be produced by sexual arousal, excitement, or even negative emotions such as jealousy.
The theory is particularly useful in explaining why people may feel deepened love even when they experience continual rejection or hurt from their assumed lover. It suggests that such negative emotions can produce strong physiological arousal.
Sternberg’s Triangular Theory of Love
Robert Sternberg says that love is made up of three components:
Feelings of closeness, affection, connection.
Motivational drives relating to sex, physical closeness, and romance.
Thoughts of love and determination to maintain that love.
These components can be combined to form eight different types of love depending on which of three components is either present or missing from relationship.
Love and Finding a Mate
In the U.S., people emphasize love as a major factor.
In other cultures, love may be a secondary consideration (Pakistan, India), although still relatively high on the list of important characteristics according to research.
What else matters?
Emotional maturity, health, similar education, chastity are among the top 18 in a study by Buss, 1990.
U.S.—love and mutual attraction.
China---men: good health; women: emotional stability & maturity.
South Africa/Zulu—men: emotional stability, women: dependable character.
Choosing a Mate
Gender differences in preferred characteristics exist.
Men prefer physical attraction.
Women prefer ambition, industriousness.
Psychologist David Buss points out that human beings, as a species, seek out certain characteristics to maximize beneficial genes and reproductive success (evolutionary perspective).
Critics of evolutionary approach argue that similarities across cultures relating to gender preferences reflect gender stereotyping and have nothing to do with evolution.
They say it is a rational choice for women to prefer a high earning-potential spouse and that men can afford to be concerned only with looks.
Filtering Models of Mate Selection
Louis Janda and Karen Llenke-Hamel suggest that people seeking mates screen potential candidates:
First, we filter for broad determinants of attractiveness, and work our way to specifics:
The end result is choice based on compatibility between two individuals.
Janda and Llenke-Hamel Model
Principle of Homogamy
Homogamy is tendency to marry someone who is similar in age, race, education, religion, and other basic demographic characteristics.
Homogamy has traditionally been dominant standard for most marriages in US.
Importance of homogamy is declining, particularly among certain ethnic groups.
Attachment Styles and Romantic Relationships
Infant attachment style is reflected in adult romantic relationships (Shaver):
Happy and confident about future of their relationships (over 50%)
Less invested, higher break-up rates, often feel lonely (25%)
Overly invested, repeated break-ups with same partner, low self-esteem (20%)
Attachment style related to nature of care adults give to their romantic partners when they need assistance.
Secure adults are more sensitive and supportive.
Anxious adults are more compulsive, intrusive.
People have relationship difficulties should look back to infant styles for insight into how to be more adaptive in adult relationships.
Gay and Lesbian Relationships
Research findings suggest that gay and lesbian relationships are quite similar to relationships between heterosexuals:
Gay men describe successful relationships in ways similar to heterosexual couple descriptions: needs of couple before individual needs; less conflict, more positive feelings toward partner
Lesbian women show high levels of attachment, caring, intimacy, affection, and respect for partner
Most seek loving, long-term, and meaningful relationships that differ little qualitatively from those desired by heterosexuals
Marriage and Cohabitation
Past three decades have seen both a decline in the number of married couples and a significant rise in couples living together without being married, a status known as cohabitation.
Married couples now make up a minority of households: as of 2005, 49.7 percent of all U.S. households contained a married couple.
Why do people choose cohabitation rather than marriage?
Not ready for lifelong commitment
“ Practice” for marriage
Reject institution of marriage
Those who feel that cohabiting increases their subsequent chances of a happy marriage are incorrect.
Chances of divorce are higher for those who have previously cohabited, according to data collected in US and Western Europe.
Why do people marry?
Many see marriage as appropriate culmination of loving relationship, while others feel it is “right” thing to do after reaching particular age in early adulthood.
Spouse can play economic, sexual role, and therapeutic and recreational role.
Only means of having children that is fully accepted by all segments of society.
Marriage offers legal benefits and protections, such as being eligible for medical insurance under a spouse’s policy and eligibility for survivor benefits like Social Security benefits.
Age of Marriage in U.S.
What makes marriage work?
Successful married partners:
Communicate relatively little negativity
Perceive themselves as interdependent
Experience social homogamy, similarity in leisure activity. and role preferences
Hold similar interest
Agree on distribution of roles
Some children are unplanned, but couples cope, because they wanted children eventually; some unplanned children are unwanted.
Today most families have no more than 2 children, rate in US today is 2.1 children per woman (in 1957, it was 3.7 children per woman).
Women are having children later today, into their late 30s and older.
A middle-class family with two children will spend about $233,000 for each child before the child reaches the age of 18.
People have children for psychological reasons.
Pleasure of watching them grow.
Hope children will provide for them in old age or offer companionship.
Most married couples have at least one child .
What produced the decline in the US fertility rate?
Availability of more reliable birth control methods
Increasing numbers of working outside the home
Choosing to have children later
Cost of raising and educating children
Fear of not being good or accessible parent
Working Parent Statistics and Distribution of Chores
Gay and Lesbian Parents
About 20% of gay men and lesbian women are parents
No difference in psychological adjustment from children raised in heterosexual homes
Specialization of roles develop
For children, no differences in terms of eventual adjustment from those raised in heterosexual households
About 20% of women and 30% of men in U.S. choose singlehood, living alone without partner for varying reasons:
View marriage as negative
View marriage as restrictive
Don’t find anyone they want to spend the rest of their lives with.
Value independence, autonomy, and freedom.
Society stigmatizes single individuals, particularly women.
Gender and Career Choices
Today women’s options for careers are unlimited. It has not always been that way.
Traditionally, women were considered most appropriate for COMMUNAL PROFESSIONS, associated with relationships (like teachers) and men were thought to be better at AGENTIC PROFESSIONS (getting things accomplished)
Today, women are less likely to be found in male-dominated professions like engineering and computer programming.
Women’s wages still lag behind those of men, even though opportunities are greater.
Women seem to hit the “glass ceiling,” an invisible barrier that prevents promotions beyond a certain level.
The Gender-Wage Gap
More women are working outside the home than ever before despite status and pay that are often lower than men’s.
Between 1950 and 2003, the percent of the female population (aged 16 and over) in the U.S. labor force increased from around 35 percent to over 60 percent, and women today make up around 55 percent of the labor force, a figure comparable to their presence in the general population.
Almost all women expect to earn living, and almost all do at some point in their lives. Furthermore, in about one-half of U.S. households, women earn about as much as their husbands.
Wages still lag behind those of men.
Why Do People Work?
Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivation
EXTRINSIC MOTIVATION drives people to obtain tangible rewards, such as money and prestige.
INTRINSIC MOTIVATION drives people to work for its own reward.
Sense of personal identity.
Central element in one’s social life.
Work is factor in determining STATUS, the evaluation by society of role person plays.
Satisfaction on the Job
Satisfaction related to job status
Worker satisfaction also associated with:
Nature of job
Amount of input one has into one’s duties
Influence employees have over others
Chapter 7: Middle Adulthood Module 7.3 Social and Personality Development in Middle Adulthood
Two Perspectives on Adult Personality Development
The traditional approach to adult personality development is the NORMATIVE-CRISIS MODEL, which views personality development in terms of fairly universal stages, tied to a sequence of age-related crises .
Erikson, Gould, and Levinson’s models are stage models.
Critics argue that normative-crisis models are outdated.
They came from a time when gender roles were more rigid.
Two Perspectives on Adult Personality Development
Suggest that timing of particular events in adult's life, rather than age per se, determine course of personality development
According to this model, a woman having her first baby at 21 would experience the same psychological forces as a woman having her first baby at 39.
Erikson – Generativity vs. Stagnation
Guiding and encouraging future generations
Leaving a lasting contribution to the world through creative or artistic output
Looking beyond oneself to the continuation of one's life through others
Focusing on the triviality of their life
Feeling they have made only a limited contribution to the world, that their presence has counted for little
People consider their contributions to family, community, work, and society.
Psychiatrist Roger Gould
Adults pass through series of seven, age-related stages
People in late 30s and early 40s begin to feel sense of urgency in attaining life’s goals
Descriptions not research supported
Keeping meaning versus rigidity
Occurs between the ages of 45 and 55
Adults seek to extract meaning from their lives by accepting strengths and weaknesses of others
Those who are rigid become increasingly isolated from others
Levinson - Seasons of Life Theory
* Interviewed males
Beginning stages have to do with leaving one’s family and entering the adult world.
Early 40s are a period of transition and crisis.
Around age 40 or 45, people move into a period that Levinson calls the midlife transition. The midlife transition is a time of questioning. People begin to focus on the finite nature of life, and they begin to question some of their everyday, fundamental assumptions.
This period of assessment may lead to a midlife crisis , a stage of uncertainty and indecision brought about by the realization that life is finite. Facing signs of physical aging, men may also discover that even the accomplishments of which they are proudest have brought them less satisfaction than they expected.
Despite widespread acceptance, evidence for midlife crisis does not exist
Non-Midlife Life Crisis
For majority of people, transition is smooth and rewarding
Many middle-aged people find their careers have blossomed
They feel younger than they actually are
We may just pay more attention to the few who exhibit a midlife crisis.
Sense of subjective well-being or general happiness remains stable over life span
Although specific events may temporarily elevate or depress a person’s mood (for example, a surprisingly high job evaluation or being laid off from work), people eventually return to their general level of happiness.
Regardless of where they stand economically, residents of countries across the world have similar levels of happiness
Marriage in Middle Adulthood
Most frequent pattern of marital satisfaction is U-shaped
Marital satisfaction begins to decline after marriage and falls to its lowest point following the birth of children
Marital satisfaction begins to grow after children leave adolescence and reaches its highest point when kids leave home:
Many couples state that their spouse is their "best friend.“
They also view marriage as a long-term commitment.
They believe their spouse has grown more interesting over the years.
Most feel their sex lives (although frequency goes down) are satisfying.
Marriage in Middle Adulthood
Why do marriages unravel?
People are more individual, spending less time together
Many feel concerned with their own personal happiness and leave an unhappy marriage
Divorce is more socially acceptable
Feelings of romantic, passionate love may subside over time
Divorce can be especially hard for traditional women over 40 who stayed home with kids and never worked outside the home:
90 percent of women under 25 remarry
While 75 percent of white women remarry, less than half of African American women remarry
Less than 33 percent of women over the age of 40 remarry
The marriage gradient pushes men to marry younger women.
Older women are victims of the harsh societal standards regarding physical attractiveness.
A major reason many remarry is that being divorced carries a stigma.
75 percent to 80 percent of divorced people eventually remarry
Second Time Around
Older couples are more mature and realistic
Roles are more flexible
Couple looks at marriage less romantically and is more cautious
Divorce rate is higher for second marriages
More stress especially with blended families
Once divorce experienced it is easier to walk away a second time
Empty Nest Syndrome
When parents experience feelings of unhappiness, worry, loneliness, and depression resulting from their children's departure from home
More myth than reality
When children leave home…
Parents can work harder
More time alone
House stays cleaner
Phone doesn't ring as often
Young adults who come back to live in homes of their middle-aged parents
Men are more likely to do it than women
Parents tend to give sons more freedom than daughters
Unable to find a job
Difficulty making ends meet
Fulfill needs of both their children and their aging parents
Couples are marrying and having children later
Parents are living longer:
This can be difficult because of role reversal.
The care of parents ranges from financial aid to having parents live in their home.
Most of the burden falls on the wife.
This can be a rewarding situation for both children and parents.
Becoming a Grandparent
Involved grandparents are actively engaged in grandparenting and have influence over their grandchildren's lives.
Companionate grandparents are more relaxed, and act as supporters and buddies to their grandchildren.
Remote grandparents are detached and distant, and show little interest in their grandchildren.
Grandmothers tend to be more involved than grandfathers.
African-American grandparents are more involved with their grandchildren than white grandparents.
Some form of violence happens in one-fourth of all marriages.
More than half of all women murdered are murdered by a partner.
Between 21 and 34 percent of women will be slapped, kicked, beaten, choked, or threatened or attacked with a weapon at least once by a partner.
Close to 15 percent of marriages in the U. S. are characterized by continuing, severe violence.
Violence occurs across social strata, ethnic groups, and religions.
Mostly it is men abusing women, but 8 percent of the cases involve the wife physically abusing the husband.
Factors in Family Violence
Growing up in a violent home
Families with more children have more violence
Single parent families with lots of stress
Neil Jacobson and John Gottman
Husbands who abuse fall into two categories:
“ Pit bulls” confine violence to those they love and strike out against their wives when they feel jealous or when they fear being abandoned
“ Cobras” are likely to be aggressive to everyone, are more likely to use weapons, and are more calculating, showing little emotion or arousal
Marital abuse by a husband occurs in three stages:
Tension-building stage where a batterer becomes upset and shows dissatisfaction initially through verbal abuse
Acute battering incident when the physical abuse actually occurs
Loving contrition stage where the husband feels remorse and apologizes for his actions
Why Women Stay
Wife feels somewhat at fault
This explains why women stay in abusive relationships
Some stay out of fear
Cycle of Violence Hypothesis
Abuse and neglect of children leads them to be predisposed to abusiveness as adults
About one-third of people who were abused or neglected as children abuse their own children
Two-thirds of abusers were not abused as children
Wife battering is particularly prevalent in cultures in which women are viewed as inferior to men.
Original English law allowed husbands to beat their wives.
Law was amended to permit beating only with a stick that was no thicker than his thumb (where the phrase "rule of thumb" comes from).
Wife beating was not removed from law until the late 1900s.
When women have low status they become easy targets; when they have high status they are threatening to their husbands.
Apparently, relatively low status makes women easy targets of violence. Conversely, unusually high status may make husbands feel threatened and consequently more likely to behave abusively.
Work and Leisure Time
Middle age may be the period when work and leisure activities are balanced most easily.
No longer feeling that they must prove themselves on the job, and increasingly valuing the contributions they are able to make to family, community, and—more broadly—society, middle-aged adults may find that work and leisure complement one another in ways that enhance overall happiness.
Jobs in Middle Adulthood
For many, middle age is the time of greatest productivity, success, and earning power.
The factors that make work satisfying undergo a transformation during middle age.
Middle-aged workers care more about the here-and-now qualities of work
The older workers are, the more overall job satisfaction they experience.
Job satisfaction is not universal in middle adulthood.
When highly trained professionals experience dissatisfaction, disillusionment, frustration, and weariness from their jobs
Workers may feel indifference and lack of concern about how well they do their job.
Idealism with which a worker may have entered profession is replaced by pessimism and attitude that it is impossible to provide any kind of meaningful solution to problem.
Unemployment in Middle Adulthood
Causes economic and psychological consequences
Feeling anxious, depressed, and irritable
Self-confidence and concentration may plummet
Sometimes depression and/or suicide
Middle-aged adults tend to stay unemployed longer than do young workers.
Seeking Work After Job Loss in Middle Adulthood
Employers may discriminate because of age and not hire older applicants
Such discrimination is not only illegal, but is based on misguided assumptions:
Research shows that older workers have less absenteeism, hold their jobs longer, are more reliable, and more willing to learn new skills
Switching and Starting Careers
Some people change or seek jobs voluntarily in middle adulthood
Old job gave little satisfaction
Mastery of the old job's challenges achieved
No longer enjoy what they do
Need employment after raising children, divorce, or death of spouse
Most middle-aged adults have 70 hours a week for leisure time.
Average middle-aged person watches 15 hours of TV per week.
Adults spend about 6 hours a week socializing.
Some turn to charity, or community organizations.
Life is faster-paced in the U.S. than in many other countries, with the exception of Japan and Western European countries.