Presentation on theme: "The Psychodynamic Explanation for Anorexia Nervosa."— Presentation transcript:
The Psychodynamic Explanation for Anorexia Nervosa
Map to Spec – Page 59 3. Content f) For one other disorder (anorexia nervosa) describe and evaluate two explanations. Students must select one explanation each from two different approaches from the five studied in Units 1 and 2.
Starter Match the descriptions to the stages of psychosexual development Put the stages in order
Psychodynamic Explanation Looking at the stages you’ve just completed, how/why do you think anorexia may develop?
Psychological explanations of anorexia - Psychodynamic notThere are three separate explanations from this approach that we will go through – not in textbook so take detailed notes! Make sure you ask questions if you don’t understand!
1. Unconscious desire to hold off puberty By being anorexic, a young girl is not moving into adulthood Remaining a child – not having adult responsibilities/worries Anorexia stops development of breasts and hips, and menstruation – childlike body remains
2. Unconscious fear of growing up sexually Similar to first explanation except instead of fearing adulthood, fearing sexual maturity Keep childlike/boyish figure – not sexually desired by others No menstruation Can remain childlike without sexual worries
3. Ineffective Parenting Bruch (1973) In early childhood, mother fails at responding to child’s needs – i.e. feeds them when their crying due to fear, doesn’t feed them when their hungry Child therefore feels ineffectual as they are not understood – grow up confused about their internal needs Child does not develop self reliance – dependent on parents
In adolescence, child attempts to break free Develops anorexia as a means of exerting control and demonstrating independence Can at least control own body Mother’s continuing relationship problems mean a desire on the mother’s part to retain dependence and encourage immaturity in her daughter.
Evaluation In your groups/pairs, attempt to come up with at least two strengths and two weaknesses of the psychodynamic explanation for anorexia
Murphy et al (2000) A study to use when evaluating the psychodynamic explanation Looked at siblings – one of which who has anorexia, other who doesn’t Found affected sibling to have fewer friends, lack of boyfriend, and perceived to have more maternal control Points to delay in psychosexual development and controlling eating as a means of showing independence
Strengths Menstruation is inhibited by anorexia and therefore an explanation for this symptom suits the features of the illness. The approach focuses on the whole situation and gathers in-depth data from individuals such as those with anorexia — so there is validity in the data that another approach using experiments might not give.
Weaknesses As with the psychodynamic approach itself, a problem is that concepts such as sexual desires and a desire not to become an adult are unconscious processes and are not measurable. So there can be little scientific evidence offered for the explanations. It cannot account for anorexia in males or for anorexia that starts in adulthood.
Extension Attempt to evaluate the psychodynamic explanation in terms of your issues and debates section: Gender bias Culture bias Nature/Nurture Free will/Determinism Parsimonious/Holistic
Exam Questions Describe one explanation for anorexia nervosa. (4 marks) Evaluate this explanation. (6 marks)