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Erik Erickson’s Psychosocial Theory Essay

1512 words - 6 pages

Research suggests parenting styles and the quality of a parent and adolescent relationship may have a impact on the psychosocial development among adolescents. Psychosocial development can be referred to as how an individual’s emotions, mind, and maturity level can develop throughout life (CITE). Erik Erickson’s psychosocial theory describes adolescence development through a series of eight stages based on the impact of social experience. Erickson’s theory also involves each stage building upon one another based on the completion of previous stages. Other factors involving the psychosocial development of adolescents include varying parenting dimensions that could affect these developmental outcomes such as: demandingness (control) versus responsiveness (acceptance) and structure versus non-structure. Parenting styles and the role of parenting are all aspects in helping achieve optimal psychosocial development. The purpose of this paper is to examine how parenting styles influence psychosocial behavior in adolescents.
Parenting Styles
Diana Baumrind (1968) explains how parenting revolves around the idea of one parenting function: control. She describes three types of parenting typologies: authoritative, authoritarian, and permissive (Baumrind, 1968). Authoritative parenting refers to a balance of control and nurturance in a rationale and issue oriented manner. This style of parenting encourages verbal “give and take” and shares reasoning behind policy. The authoritative parent affirms the child’s present qualities, while setting standards. The authoritarian parent attempts to shape, control, and evaluate the attitudes and behaviors with a set standard of conduct. This type of parenting seeks high control with low nurturance and support. The permissive parent is high in nurturance and support, but low in control. This type of parent allows for excess of autonomy (Baumrind, 1968). Baumrind’s model also indicates children contribute to their own development through their influence on parents (Darling & Steinberg, 1993).
In Maccoby and Martin’s research they describe a parenting style reflecting two specific underlying processes: 1) the number and type of demands made by the parents and 2) the contingency of parental reinforcement (Darling & Steinberg, 1993). Maccoby and Martin expanded Baumrind’s work into four parenting styles: authoritative, authoritarian, indulgent, and neglectful. These four parenting styles involved combinations of acceptance/responsiveness and demandingness/control (Darling & Steinberg, 1993). Demandingness is referred to when parents may allow/implore for a child to become integrated into the family. This includes maturity demands, supervision, disciplinary efforts and willingness to confront the child who disobeys. Responsiveness is referred to as the actions in which intentionally promote individuality, self-regulation, and self-assertion (Maccoby and Martin, 1983). This parent is to be supportive to a child’s needs and...

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