Freud's Stages of Psychosexual Development


Stages of Development

Description of Stages

Oral Stage
According to Freud, infants experience the oral stage from birth to eight months of age. This particular stage is focused around the infant's desire for stimulation via the mouth. This stimulation takes the form of actions such as eating, biting objects, and general manipulation of the mouth. The mouth is also used as a primary mode of exploration.
Anal Stage
From one year old until about three, the child enters the Anal Stage. The Anal Stage is characterized by a shift in the area from which pleasure is derived. Instead of the mouth, a sense of pleasure comes from the anus, specifically the release and retention of feces. This is done due to the fact that it gives the child some sense of control. The Anal Stage is the time in which toilet training usually occurs.
Phallic Stage
The Phallic stage represents a child's source of pleasure shifting to the genitals. This stage occurs around the ages of three to six years old. Sexual gratification begins to take the form of masturbation. This is also the stage in which the Oedipus complex and Electra complex occur. The Oedipus complex is a competition in receiving the mother's affection with the father. Freud said that this was rooted in a desire to kill the father and marry the mother. The Electra complex is essentially the opposite, and it applies to girls instead of boys. Accompanying the Electra complex is a form of penis envy, in which girls think that they had a penis and subsequently lost it.
Latency Stage
The latency stage is more or less a lapse in the seeking of sexual gratification. This lasts from age six until the start of puberty. In this stage, a child's gratification comes not from the stimulation of a body part in a sexual manner, but from outer stimuli. fixations don't usually occur in the latency stage, as it doesn't really have a pleasure seeking focus.
Genital Stage
The last stage of psychosexual development is the Genital Stage. This occurs during puberty. Similar to the Phallic stage, sexual gratification is derived from the genetalia. Unlike the phallic stage, however, the Ego is established at this point and adult relationships are able to be formed. If a child was not fixated on an earlier stage by this point, then future development should be relatively normal.



Erikson's Stages of Psychosocial Development

Stages of Development

Description of Stages

Oral-sensory
The first stage developed by Erikson occurs from birth to roughly a year old. This stage is characterized by a need to develop a sense of trust in other humans. According to Erikson, this sense of trust or mistrust is essential in a healthy maturation process. A child at this age is completely dependent on others, and consistent care given to the child helps build a sense of trust in both other people and in the child's own worth.
Muscular-Anal Stage
With a child's growth comes its ability to do more on its own. This stage lasts from age one to about three. During this stage, a child begins to become more independent in its actions. Because of this, the man issue to deal with in this stage is autonomy versus self-doubt. If a child is allowed to explore its abilities and assert a small level of independence, it will be less doubtful of itself. If the child is kept in an environment that's too controlling, it will never develop important skills as well as the idea that it can do things on its own. This can cause self-doubt.
Locomoter-genital Stage
From ages three to five, a child begins an attempt to mimic what it sees in adult life. Instead of the basic functions of the previous stage, actions are more goal oriented and cognitive planning is starting to take form. If a child is prevented or hindered in their attempts to integrate at least somewhat with the adult world, the child could feel guilty for having caused conflict.
Latency
Ages six to eleven see a time in which a child is focused more on social relationships with others. During this latency period, a child begins to develop its skills and a failure to do so could lead to a sense of inadequacy.
Adolescence
During Adolescence, a child begins to form a sense of self. Interactions with peers are an essential part of growth in this stage. Related to this is the fact that a child in this stage is often very concerned with their appearance both physically and how they present themselves to others. There is often role confusion associated with adolescent years.

David McCullough