Developing Intimate Relationship
Self-concept and Self Esteem * To have successful relationships, we must first accept and feel good about ourselves. * A positive self-concept and a healthy level or self-esteem help us love and respect others. * As adults, we probably have a sense that we’re basically lovable, worthwhile people and that we can trust others is, as babies and children, we felt loved, valued and respected; if adults responded to our needs in a reasonably appropriate way; and if they gave us the freedom to explore and develop a sense of being separate individuals. * According to psychologist Erik Erikson, it continues to develop as we encounter and resolve various crises at each stage of life. * Gender role – the activities, abilities, and characteristics our culture deems appropriate for us based on whether we’re male or female. * Our adult styles of loving may be based on the styles of attachment we established in infancy with our mother, father or other primary caregiver. People who are secure in their intimate relationships probably had a secure, trusting, mutual satisfying attachment to their mother, father or other parenting figure. * People’s earliest experiences and relationships were less than ideal, however, they can still establish satisfying relationships in adulthood. People can be resilient and flexible. They have the capacity to change their ideas, beliefs and behavior patterns. They can learn ways to raise their self-esteem; they can become more trusting, accepting, and appreciative of others.
Friendship * Friendships give people the opportunity to share themselves and discover others. * The friendships we form in childhood are important in our development; through them we learn about tolerance, sharing and trust. * Companionship – Friends are relaxed and happy in each other’s company. They typically have common values and interests and make