Research Reaction Paper
Research Reaction Psychosocial Development Based on Age of First Birth PS315 Theories of Personality Summary Topic area: Teenage pregnancy is one of the most common problems that are growing worldwide. This condition is most predominant in developed countries like the U. S. There are a number of factors responsible for teenage pregnancy. For example, higher rates of poverty, lower education levels, etc.
This research reaction paper examines the psychological status; social relationships; and home, work, and parenting stress and satisfaction in their young adulthood for a sample of rural women who were teen mothers compared to their cohort who had their first child in their twenties. Service providers need to understand psychosocial outcomes of first childbirth in order to more effectively meet the physical and mental health needs of all young mothers. Hypothesis: There was one hypothesis in this article.
Given the wide range of evidence illustrating negative consequences of teen motherhood, would be that early child bearers would suffer similar deficits in psychosocial domains. Yet, while a few studies have looked at psychosocial adjustment in pregnant and parenting adolescents, existing research has rarely been longitudinal so this hypothesis has not been well tested. Method: In order to perform this experiment, Data for this research were drawn from two studies: 1.
The first, the Rural Adolescent Development Study (RAD), was a 5-year prospective longitudinal study of the antecedents of rural adolescent health and development starting in 1985. 2. The second study was a young adult follow-up of participants from the RAD Project, begun in 1997. The follow-up, the Evaluation of Rural Outcomes of Sexuality (EROS), by adding an additional wave of data collection in young adulthood (1997), made it possible to examine a sample of rural females longitudinally from junior high school and continuing through their mid-twenties approximately 12 years later.
The subject population for this particular study, selected from the larger EROS sample, was comprised of the 98 white females who had given birth to at least one child by the time of their interview for the follow-up study. Results and Discussion: The results of this longitudinal study suggests that the psychosocial status differences found between teen and young adult mothers appear to be the result of earlier psychological and social qualities, factors that preceded the pregnancy.
While the study reported here reflects outcomes for young women of the 1990s, there is no reason at this point to question whether antecedent psychosocial status is not also relevant for present adolescent mothers. These outcome variables reflect individual psychosocial status variables. These conclusions help understand the long-term consequences of first childbirth for a sample of rural, disadvantaged white females.
It is important to note; however, the small sample limits the statistics resulting in further work to track the psychosocial consequences of the timing of first childbirth in larger samples and past early adulthood to see whether the absence of differences in psychosocial outcomes is replicated. The investigators are hoping to assess these outcomes again and to determine whether these findings are similar for urban or suburban samples as well. Critique The purpose of this study was to explore the psychological status; social elationships; and home, work, and parenting stress and satisfaction in their young adulthood who were teen mothers compared to another group who had their first child in their twenties. The researchers chose the sample from a rural population because there is limited research on rural youth in general. The data for this research study were drawn from two studies. The first study took place over a period of 5 years. The second study took place approximately 12 years later. The research used in this study was a longitudinal design.
The sample consisted of 98 Caucasian women. The first group, were teen mothers who had their first child at or before the age of 18. The second group were young adult mothers who had their first child between the ages of 19 and 22, while the third group delayed childbearing until the age of 23 or later. My critique of this study is quite simple. I do believe the study has positive as well as several limitations. On the positive side, this research involved repeated observations of the same variables over a twelve-year period of time.
The study made observing changes more accurate by tracking three different age groups; which can be applied in other fields. The study was mostly observational, in the sense that they observe without manipulating it. The internal and external validity of this study is in question. In order for a sample to yield valid and reliable information an appropriate sample size must be selected. The sample in the group of people was only comprised of 98 girls; which may not represent the population well.
Also the study sample was limited to Caucasian females from one specific residential community/school district in only one state. The study didn’t mention sampling any minority groups. Studying females as well as subjects from other residential facilities could have provided more credibility to the results. Also, it was not mentioned if the research participants knew about the risks involved in research and if they were being studied. Was an informed consent obtained? Did a debriefing occur?
The lack of this information leads to questions of ethical conduct by the researchers. Obtaining informed consent and providing debriefing would have allowed the researchers to gain valuable information through in-depth interviews. This study has been limited in four important ways: • First, it lacks information about socioeconomic variables such as parental education, occupation, family income, and welfare receipt. The effects of the family structure on child development can affect their behavior and educational problems. Second, it would be interesting to see further work on the subject to track further psychological consequences of the timing of first childbirth in larger samples and past early adulthood to see whether the absence of differences in psychosocial outcomes is replicated over time. • Third, it would be also critical to find out whether these findings were similar for samples living in urban or suburban areas. • Fourth, it would be fascinating to see further study about the role of factors such as perceptions of appropriate behaviors in contributing to teen pregnancy.
Relationship of Study to Personality Theory: The personality theories that I consider are the most useful in this study are Erik Erikson’s eight stages of the life cycle and Sigmund Freud’s theory of psychosexual stages. Much like Freud, Erikson’s theory describes eight stages of psychosocial development through which people progress throughout their lifespan. Each stage plays a major role in the development of personality and psychological needs. Unlike Freud’s theory of psychosexual stages, Erickson’s theory describes the impact of social experience throughout our lifespan. Erikson’s Life Stages:
Stage 1. Infancy HOPE – Basic Trust vs. Basic Mistrust This stage not focused in this study; though, it would have been fascinating if the study had followed up with the mother’s children from birth to 18 months in order to study the infant’s actual experiences and attachments to the mother. • This is the most fundamental stage in life because during this stage a child develops trust; he or she will feel safe and secure in the world. Failure to develop trust will lead to frustration, anger, hostility, cynicism, or depression. Both trust and mistrust are inevitable experiences of infants. This crisis stage incorporates Freud’s psychosexual oral stage, in which oral matters, notably feeding and relationship define the infant’s crucial relationships and experiences with the mother. Stage 2. Early Childhood WILL – Autonomy vs. Shame & Doubt This stage not focused in this study; though, it would have been fascinating if the study had followed up with the mother’s children first two to three years of age in order to study the psychosexual mode of early childhood and the development of their personal control over their physical skills. Success in this stage leads feelings of autonomy, failure results in feelings of shame and doubt. • Toilet training is significant part of this crisis, as in Freud’s anal stage, where parental reactions, encouragement and patience play an important role in shaping the child’s experience and successful progression through this period. Stage 3. Play Age PURPOSE – Initiative, vs. Guilt This stage not focused in this study; though, it would have been fascinating if the study had followed up with the mother’s children need to begin emphasizing control and power over the environment. Success in this stage leads to a sense of purpose. Children who try to employ too much power experience disapproval, resulting in a sense of guilt. • This stage correlates with Freud’s phallic stage, characterized by a perfectly natural interest in genitals, where babies come from, and as Freud asserted, an attachment to the opposite sex parent, and the Oedipus Complex, Penis Envy and Castration Anxiety. Stage 4. School Age COMPETENCE – Industry vs. Inferiority
This stage not focused in this study; though, it would have been fascinating if the study had followed up with the children’s learning, skills, and schoolwork. Also we would like to investigate how children cope with new social and academic demands. • Children need to learn to work hard, but they also must develop some sense of inferiority. • This stage correlates with Freud’s psychosexual latency stage, when sexual motives and concerns are largely repressed while the young person concentrates on work and skills development. Stage 5. Adolescence FIDELITY – Identity vs. Identity Confusion
This is the life stage; which belongs to the first group of mothers who had their first child at or before the age of 18. During this stage teens must develop a sense of self and personal identity. Glandular, hormonal, and physical changes in the child’s body cause a resurgence of sexual thoughts, feelings and behaviors. • This is the stage that starts puberty and is marked by a person’s struggle to find ego identity. • Success leads to an ability to stay true to themselves, while failure leads to role confusion and a weak sense of self. Stage 6. Young Adulthood LOVE – Intimacy vs.
Isolation This is the life stage; which belongs to the second group of mothers who had their first child between the ages of 19 and 22. Also this stage belongs to the mother’s who delayed childbearing until the age of 23 and later. There is a strong reciprocal feature in the intimacy experienced during this stage – giving and receiving – especially between sexual or marital partners. • During this stage young adults want to form intimate, loving relationships with other people. • Success leads to strong relationships, however failure results in loneliness and isolation.
Stage 7. Adulthood CARE – Generativity vs. Stagnation This is the life stage that the women in the oldest group (23 or later) would be in at the time of childbirth. At this stage adults make significant contributions to society, often by having children or creating a positive change that benefits other people. Erickson’s analysis of this stage was strongly oriented towards parenting. • Success at this stage actually depends on giving and caring, putting something back into life, to the best of one’s capabilities; while failure results in shallow involvement in the world. During this stage, Erickson saw care as taking care of the persons and products that one has learned to care for. Stage 8. Old Age WISDOM – Integrity vs. Despair & Disgust This final stage not focused in this study; though, it would have been fascinating if the study would track the effects of teen motherhood during old age in order to reflect back on life. Those who are unsuccessful during this phase will feel that their life has been wasted and will experience many regrets. But those who feel proud of their accomplishments will feel a sense of integrity.
These individuals will attain wisdom, even when confronting death. The results of this study showed that the consequences of teenage pregnancy are complicated and women who gave birth as teenagers are not different in terms of psychological health than women who delay childbearing. Early role place the mother at risk in that normal development processes are shortened and the teenager may be immature to meet the new challenges. The timing of childbirth may affect other adult role transitions as well as an individual’s competence in handling them.
The study also suggests that a teenager is not likely to suffer from low self-esteem, depression, or other psychological problems due to motherhood. The study proves that mothers who started having children earlier had on average one more child. At the mother’s workplace there were no differences found in job stress, suggesting that it is not the quality of their jobs that leads to dissatisfaction, but rather their emotional characteristics which explain their lower satisfaction. Relationship of the Study to your Own Life and Personality Development: This research caught my attention.
I turned 25 years old when I had my first son. In my case I knew what I was doing. That is a little different from being 18 and pregnant, I can relate to these mothers and I think teenagers have to make sacrifices and that many problems could happen with teen pregnancy. My mother always said I could talk to her when I was ready but honestly that is the last thing any teen wants to do. I knew the risks of having unprotected sex but I am glad it never happened to me. Our high school had the worst reputation because it had a high number of teen pregnancies.
Not all of the teen and young mothers were able to go out and do whatever. Some sat at home looking depressed. On the same side of the coin there were girls that got pregnant in purpose. A good friend of mine was pregnant on accident and sadly lost the baby. That same year she was trying to get pregnant on purpose even though we were 17 and 18 years old and still in high school. I am not against teen pregnancy, I believe being a teenage mother is one of the hardest things a woman can go through when it interrupts school and other plans.
It’s the teen’s fault to having sex, but at the same time the parents should have been watching them more. Then they probably would have never had sex and they wouldn’t be pregnant, just plain and simple. I do understand teenage pregnancy isn’t something that you plan ahead of time. Every young teenage girl makes a mistake by falling pregnant at a young age. It could be from various reasons, starting from one stupid nightstand. There is always a story behind it. Although teenage pregnancy isn’t right at a young age, I can’t be against them.
They need all the support they can get and help them be a good mother to the child they give birth to. Help them set an example for younger children to not have a child at a young age. References Feist, J. , & Feist, G. J. (2009). Theories of Personality (Seventh ed. ). New York, NY: McGraw Hill. Vicary, J. R. , & Corneal, D. A. (2001). A comparison of young women’s psychosocial status based on age of their first childbirth. Family & Community Health: The Journal of Health Promotion & Maintenance, 24(2), 73-84. Retrieved from EBSCOhost.