Classical Conditioning In Relation to Distrust in Relationships

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Classical conditioning is the theory that involves a subject learning a new behavior by the process of association. A naturally occuring stimulus (the unconditioned stimulus) is paired with a response (the unconditioned response). Then, a neutral stimulus (the conditioned stimulus) is paired with the unconditioned stimulus and eventually the conditioned stimulus produces the initial response of the unconditioned stimulus without the unconditioned stimulus being present. The response, therefore, becomes the conditioned response. This study had a major influence on the psychological study of behaviorism. “Behaviorism is based on the assumption that learning occurs through interactions with the environment” (Cherry 1). Classical conditioning …show more content…
For the second stage, a white rat was used as Watson’s CS, the CS must be a neutral stimulus that initially has no effect on the UR. Little Albert showed no phobia towards the rat before conditioning occurred. By pairing the US with the CS, the infant learned to associate the loud noise of the hammer and metal bar with the white rat. After strengthening the association between the US and the CS by repetition, Little Albert eventually became fearful and upset when only presented with the once neutral stimulus, the white rat. This response was the CR which marked the completion of step three. Little Albert was now afraid of the white rat because it triggered his fear of the loud noise. Classical conditioning can be used to prove many forms of behavior between subjects when looking at the the right unconditioned/ conditioned stimuli and unconditioned/ conditioned responses. The theory of classical conditioning can be used to explain the development of distrust and trust issues in the relationships between people. “Trust: belief that someone or something is reliable, good, honest, effective, etc.” (Merriam- Webster Dictionary). Distrust in a relationship occurs when the trust between two people is diminished. Distrust can have many negative affects on a person including: trust issues, anxiety, suspicion, fear of opening up, etc. Symptoms of distrust can depend on the severity of the distrust in the
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