Essay on Erikson's Psychosocial Stages and Adopted Children

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Difficulties and Stages of Adopted Children

Erikson believed that people develop in psychosocial stages. He emphasized developmental change throughout the human life span. In Erikson's theory, eight stages of development result as we go through the life span. Each stage consists of a crisis that must be faced. According to Erikson, this crisis is not a catastrophe but a turning point. The more an individual resolves the crises successfully, the healthier development will be.

The first stage of Erikson's psychosocial stage is trust vs. mistrust, which is experienced, in the first year of life. Infants learn to trust in order to satisfy their needs thus developing a feeling of self-worth. When infants receive inconsistent care they
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I learned to feed myself, dress myself and perform other tasks much earlier than societies norm.

Initiative vs. guilt is Erikson's third stage of development, which occurs between three to six years of age. This is an expansion on the autonomy developed in the second stage. During this stage children begin pretend play with peers and accept responsibilities such as chores. If this stage develops conflict between family members and this child is unable to balance their initiative with the demands of others guilt may begin to form. I was placed in my adopted family at the beginning of this stage. I believe that I developed a little slower in this stage than children who were biological or who were adopted at a young age. I also believe that I developed slower than children who lived in a consistent foster home during this stage and were adopted later did. The reason that I believe this is because I felt very guilty during this stage. I felt that I had abandoned my foster family and the people that I lived with. My biological parents had visitation up until this stage and I thought that I did something wrong that made them not want to see me anymore. I turned this sense of guilt in to a feeling of needing to please everyone. My parents said that I would do anything to help and would get very upset and ask them if they were going to give me away if I spilt something or forgot to put something away and had to be asked to do
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