Ericksons 8 Stages of Life

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Erikson’s 8 Stages- 1

Erikson’s 8 Stages of life

PSY 240
February 10, 2012
Erikson’s 8 Stages- 2

"It is human to have a long childhood; it is civilized to have an even longer childhood. Long childhood makes a technical and mental virtuoso out of man, but it also leaves a life-long residue of emotional immaturity in him". This was a quote stated by Erik Homburger Erikson the creator of the 8 stages of life. Erikson believed life is organized into eight different stages that start from they day you are born and continue until the day you die (Harder). Since adult life tends to last longer then childhood or teen years Erikson broke down the stages in experiences naming them young adult, middle aged adults, and older adults (Harder). Putting all the stages of life in order you have: infancy birth to 18 months, early childhood 18 months to three years, play age three to five years, school age six to twelve years, adolescence 12 to 18 years, young adults 18 to 35 years, middle adult 35 to 55 or 65, and the last a final stage late adulthood 55 or 65 to death (Harder). Breaking down each stage and really analyzing it can give a person a great outlook on where there life has been and where it is going, because nobody still living has completed these stages, so there is always room for change and new experiences. Infancy: birth to 18 months trust vs. mistrust

Infancy is the stage in life that is also referred to as the Oral Sensory Stage because this is the stage in life where an infant chooses to put everything they can grasp onto in their mouth (Harder). The key thing to this stage in life is a person’s mother. The mother is the person that an infant comes into the world already. It is the only person that an infant can trust, but that trust is also easily forgotten if an infant does not feel the love and affection back from its mother. If a person makes it through this stage in life trust will be something that they have learned, and they can have confidence in themselves in the future. If we fail to experience trust, frustration will be all a child knows and they may feel mistrust with themselves and the world in general (Harder).

Erikson’s 8 Stages- 3

Obviously being 21 years old the first stage of your life is not something you tend to remember, but having a child and experiencing this stage through them gives me a better outlook on what this portion or stage of life is like. I have a four month old and I am already beginning to see things that I have read about in this stage through her. For instance, she does put everything she can get ahold of inside her mouth. Which reading about infancy tells me that it is a good thing, and she is on the right path to where she should be developmentally. Also, I have noticed that she has already built trust with me. She knows who I am and she trust that I will be there for her when she is crying, needs to eat, diaper change, etc. Knowing that trust can shape a child’s future makes me extremely happy that my child can trust me, and I hope that my daughter can go through this world knowing that I will always be there for her to trust and never have to experience mistrust in herself or the world. Early Childhood: 18 months to 3 years Autonomy vs. Shame

This stage in life is the part of life when many milestones’ are experienced. Such as, saying very first sentences, walking, eating without being feed, and even going the bathroom in a toilet for the first time. This is when we begin to build self-esteem, independence, and freedom. Also when we learn the rights from the wrongs, and learning about our bodies and gaining more control over ourselves (Harder). This is also the portion of our life where vulnerability takes a huge toll over us, and we may feel shame or doubt if we are in the process of learning and make a mistake (Harder). For instance a child learning to use the toilet and he or she has an accident it can be very shameful to a child of this age, but if a child...
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