This paper serves to apply the knowledge learned throughout the course, COUN 502, to the development and growth in my lifespan. I will aim to demonstrate a working knowledge of the theories, terminology, and concepts of human growth and development. I will show how these disciplines apply to my own life experiences and how I did throughout my key life events, through the use of empirical studies.
Although I would like to believe I have led a fairly normal life, perfectly meeting each and every milestone or challenge without hitting any speed bumps. Deep down I know, that I there are various aspects of my life that have caused struggles in my development. Particularly in my early childhood and adolescent years, my struggles went from cognitive and developmental, onto psychological and spiritual. While I will touch on where my life has led me to this point, I will focus on a troubled middle childhood dealing with Attention-Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder & compulsive lying. I will follow with my adolescence where I dealt huge spiritual and psychological blows that together with my spirituality shaped who I am today. Middle Childhood
Now knowing that I had Attention-Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) as a child, I can make much more sense of the different ways I acted out in my elementary years, and why I was constantly viewed negatively by my peers and teachers. Although there has been much study to the connection between drug and alcohol use in pregnancy being a cause of ADHD in children, my mother never had a history of using either. However, there is also ongoing research in regards to ADHD as a result of high prenatal stress. Prior to my conception, my parents had tried unsuccessfully for 10 years to have children. Fortunately, once I was born, my parents gave birth to my sisters very soon after. However, my mother recalls how stressed she was throughout my pregnancy, as she and my father constantly worried about miscarrying and premature delivery. Meanwhile, my mother also worked a full time job she hated, up until the week I was born. Both of these factors contributed to a high stress level that may have led to my ADHD. “Exposure to prenatal maternal stress is often regarded an important factor underlying several forms of psychopathology, including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (Mulder et al., 2002). I was constantly in trouble, for not following in-class reading, because I was typically busy cutting out pictures I liked from my textbooks. Whenever a teacher asked the class a question, I would raise my hand and interrupt with a completely unrelated story about whatever was on my mind. My mother struggled with her grasp of English and came from an under developed country that had a very little understanding of ADHD. She felt hurt and insulted, during parent teacher conferences, by the accusations of my condition and went into denial from what she considered an attack on me. Also, “there is no simple test to identify whether a child has ADHD… Only a trained clinician can make an accurate diagnosis following an extensive evaluation of the child and interviews with parents and teachers” (Feldman, 2014, 285). So even with her reluctance to have me examined, she was worried that either a doctor could say there was nothing wrong with me, and I was just a weird child, or perhaps worse; I really did have a disorder. It took me until high school years to learn what ADHD was, and that I had gone through a childhood unintentionally alienating myself from many people who did not wish to deal with my lack of focus and my inability to appropriately direct my energy. While I never went through medication or therapy for my ADHD, I often met with school counselors in order to help make my school experiences move more swiftly. Athletically, I was excelling, and as far as school work, I did very well in keeping up. However,...
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