Is a complex of all the attribute behaviuour, temperamentsl,emotional and mental that characterize a unique individual.

parent need to study child personality and how to deal with it, personality make one attracitive or less attractive in the society.

just read this article hope you will able to deal with child behaviour also adult one, 


Provides  the conceptual tools for understanding key developmental tasks characteristic of the various stages of life. 

  • According to the Freudian psychoanalytic view, first six years of life are vital in forming the personality. 

  • Three areas of personal and social development are:

    • love and trust

    • dealing with negative feelings, and 

    • developing a positive acceptance of sexuality.

Oral stage (1st Year)

  • Infant needs basic nurturing or later feelings of greediness and acquisitiveness may develop. 

  • Oral fixations result from deprivation of oral gratification. 

  • Later personality problems can include mistrust of others, rejecting others; love, and fear of or inability to form intimate relationships.

Anal stage (1-3 Years)

  • Developmental tasks include learning independence, accepting personal power, and learning to express negative feelings such as rage and aggression.

  •  Parental discipline patterns and attitudes have significant consequences for child’s later personality development

Phallic stage (3-6 Years)

  • Basic conflict centers on unconscious incestuous desires that the child develops for parent of opposite sex.

  • These desires are threatening and therefore repressed

Phallic stage (3-6 Years)

  • Boys experience the Oedipus complex – mother is love object for boys. 

  • Girls experience the Electra complex – strive to win father’s love and approval. 

  • Both have impact on sexual attitudes and feelings that the child later develops.

Latency stage (6-12 Years)

  • Sexual interest are replaced by interests in school, playmates, sports, and a range of new activities. 

  • This is a time of socialization and forming relationships with others.

Genital stage (12-18 Years)

  • Themes of phallic stage are revived. This stage begins with puberty and lasts until senility sets in. 

  • Adolescents learn to deal with sexual energy by investing it in various socially acceptable activities such as friendships, engaging in art or sports, and preparing for a career.

  • Like Freud and many others, Erik Erikson maintained that personality develops in a predetermined order, and builds upon each previous stage. 

  • This is called the epigenic principle.

Erikson’s (1959) theory of psychosocial development has eight distinct stages. 

  • For Erikson (1963), these crises are of a psychosocial nature because they involve psychological needs of the individual (i.e. psycho) conflicting with the needs of society (i.e. social).

  • Successful completion of each stage results in a healthy personality and the acquisition of basic virtues. 

  • Failure to successfully complete a stage can result in a reduced ability to complete further stages and therefore a more unhealthy personality and sense of self. 

Infancy: Trust vs. Mistrust (0 – 12 months)

  • The main question here is: Is the world a safe place or is it full of unpredictable events and accidents waiting to happen?

  • The infant is uncertain about the world in which they live. 

  • To resolve these feelings of uncertainty the infant looks towards their primary caregiver for stability and consistency of care

  • Consistent, predictable and reliable caregiving develops a sense of trust in a child which will carry with them to other relationships (feeling secure)

  • Success leads to the virtue of hope (feeling the possibility that other people will be there are a source of support. 

  • Harsh or inconsistent, unpredictable and unreliable develops a sense of mistrust (lack of confidence in the world around them or in their abilities to influence events.

  • Basic sense of mistrust are carried to other relationships resulting in anxiety, heightened insecurities, and an over feeling of mistrust in the world around them.

Early Childhood: Autonomy vs. Shame and Doubt (18 months – 3 years)

  • The child is developing physically and becoming more mobile to assert independence.

  • The child is discovering that they have many skills and abilities, such as putting on clothes and shoes, playing with toys, etc. 

  • Such skills illustrate the child's growing sense of independence and autonomy. 

  • Erikson states it is critical that parents allow their children to explore the limits of their abilities within an encouraging environment which is tolerant of failure.

  • The aim has to be “self control without a loss of self-esteem” (Gross, 1992). 

  • Success in this stage will lead to the virtue of will.

  • If children in this stage are encouraged and supported in their increased independence, they become more confident and secure in their own ability to survive in the world.

  • If children are criticized, overly controlled, or not given the opportunity to assert themselves, they begin to feel inadequate (feel a sense of shame or doubt in their own abilities)

Pre-school Years: Initiative vs. Guilt (3 – 6 years)

  • Central to this stage is play, as it provides children with the opportunity to explore their interpersonal skills through initiating activities.

  • Children begin to plan activities, make up games, and initiate activities with others.

  •  If given this opportunity, children develop a sense of initiative, and feel secure in their ability to lead others and make decisions.

  • Conversely, if this tendency is squelched, either through criticism or control, children develop a sense of guilt. 

  • They may feel like a nuisance to others and will therefore remain followers, lacking in self-initiative.

  • A healthy balance between initiative and guilt is important. Success in this stage will lead to the virtue of purpose.

School Age: Industry (competence) vs. Inferiority (aged 5 to 12 yrs)

  • Children are at the stage where they will be learning to read and write, basic arithmetic, to do things on their own. 

  • The child now feels the need to win approval by demonstrating specific competencies that are valued by society, and begin to develop a sense of pride in their accomplishments.

  • If children are encouraged and reinforced for their initiative, they begin to feel industrious and feel confident in their ability to achieve goals. 

  • If this initiative is not encouraged the child begins to feel inferior, doubting his own abilities and therefore may not reach his or her potential.

  • A balance between competence and modesty is necessary. Success in this stage will lead to the virtue of competence.

Adolescence: Identity vs. Role Confusion (age 12 to 18 yrs)

  • Children are becoming more independent and want to belong to a society and fit in.

  • It is during this stage that the adolescent will re-examine his identity and try to find out exactly who he or she is. 

  • Erikson suggests that two identities are involved: the sexual and the occupational.

  • Success in this stage will lead to the virtue of fidelity.

  • Fidelity involves being able to commit one's self to others on the basis of accepting others, even when there may be ideological differences.

  • Success in this stage will lead to the virtue of fidelity.

  • Fidelity involves being able to commit one's self to others on the basis of accepting others, even when there may be ideological differences.

Young Adulthood: Intimacy vs. Isolation (ages 18 to 40 yrs)

  • Occurring in young adulthood we begin to share ourselves more intimately with others. 

  • We explore relationships leading toward longer term commitments with someone other than a family member.

  • Psychological maturity during this stage is tested in the ability to form close relationship which entails self disclosure and self less interests.

  • Avoiding intimacy, fearing commitment and relationships for the fear of rejection can lead to isolation, loneliness, and sometimes depression. 

  • Success in this stage will lead to the virtue of love.

Middle Age: Generativity vs. Stagnation (ages 40 to 65 yrs)

  • During middle adulthood we establish our careers, settle down within a relationship, begin our own families and develop a sense of being a part of the bigger picture.

  • We give back to society through raising our children, being productive at work, and becoming involved in community activities and organizations.

  • Attempts to leave a legacy through meaningful social contribution are made (virtue of care)

  • We also deal with discrepancy between dreams and what we have hoped for and reality.

  • By failing to achieve these objectives, we become stagnant and feel unproductive. 

Later Life: Ego Integrity vs. Despair (65+ yrs)

  • Time to contemplate r accomplishments to develop integrity

  • If we see our lives as unproductive, feel guilt about our past, or feel that we did not accomplish our life goals, we become dissatisfied with life and develop despair

  • Success in this stage will lead to the virtue of wisdom. 

  • Wisdom enables a person to look back on their life with a sense of closure and completeness, and also accept death without fear.

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