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Psychological Development in Middle Adulthood. Marriage and family relations There are Five important aspects of middle aged life today: Relationships.

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Presentation on theme: "Psychological Development in Middle Adulthood. Marriage and family relations There are Five important aspects of middle aged life today: Relationships."— Presentation transcript:

1 Psychological Development in Middle Adulthood

2 Marriage and family relations There are Five important aspects of middle aged life today: Relationships in marriage Relationship with aging parents Relationship with siblings Divorce

3 Marriage at Middle Age Marriage age is often a time when husbands and wives reappraise their marriage. Middle Life Transition It often causes a person to simultaneously examine current relationships and consider changes for the future. Often whatever tensions that exists in a marriage is suppressed while the children still lives at home. As they leave to go off to college or to start families of their own, these tensions are openly expressed.

4 Emotional Divorce Sometimes couple learns to withstand each other rather than live with each other. The only activities and interests they share are ones that revolved around children. When the children leave, they are forced to recognize how far apart they are drifted. In fact they engage in emotional divorce. But most couples whose marriages have lasted this long have built the type of relationship that can withstand reappraisal, and they continue for the rest of their lives. The period after the children leave home is like second honeymoon for many.

5 Empty nest syndrome After the emotional period of negative emotions that follow this disruption of the family, often called the empty nest syndrome, married couples evaluate the job they have done with their children. Then they realize that they have more freedom and privacy and fewer worries. Husband and wives now can look forward to spending 20 0r 30 years together as a couple rather than as a large family.

6 The Happy Marriage Earlier research suggested that there was always more negative interaction in unhappy marriages than in happy marriage. Gottman and Krokoff found certain types of conflict may in fact be positive factors in happy, lasting marriage. They also found that certain types of conflict, particularly defensiveness and withdrawal on the part of husband indicated that marriage was in trouble. They assigned to the wife the role of manager of marital disagreement. Another factor related to marital satisfaction is parenting satisfaction. In other words, if a couple has a strong marriage they are more likely to b content in their parenting roles.

7 The Unmarried Individual In a general, a person who has never married by middle age will not get married. Such people tend either to have very low or very high education levels. At the low extreme of those, who have less then five years of school, one person in seven has never married. The factors that kept these people from completing school, such as mental illness or other handicaps, are probably the same ones that make them less likely to get married. At the other extreme, 13 percent of middle aged women with 17 or more years of education have never been married. These women may choose high education and a career over marriage.

8 Relationships with aging parents Middle age is also a time when most people develop improved relationships with their parents. Middle aged children, most of them parents themselves gain a new perspective on parenthood and so revaluate the actions taken by their own parents. Also grandchildren can strengthen bonds that may have weekend when their parents left home when they were young adults. Young children who have close relationships with their parents and whose parents provided consistent care will have more positive later relationships. The more frequently problem of middle adult women is not menopause and aging but caring for their parents and parents in law. In family daughter is responsible for the care of the elderly parents.

9 Friendship Marriage is a time when friendship becomes fewer and more precious. In early adulthood, interaction frequency with close friends begins to decline while at the same time it increases with spouses and siblings. It would seem that about age 30, individuals choose a selective few relationships from which to drive support, self definition and a sense of stability. Emotional closeness, increases through out adulthood in relationship with relatives and close friends.

10 The Middle Aged Divorced Person The divorce rate is higher for second marriages. Mid life is a time when divorce is less like to be occur, most divorce takes place during first five years of marriage. Nevertheless, the proportion of divorced persons in mid life is high because many who divorced earlier have never remarried. Men and women over 40 experiences significantly more unhappiness then younger people at the same age of divorce. The reasons are clear: Length of time of marriage Complex economy and property linkage A web of social relationships A higher standard of living Non Fault Divorce The law that lets people get divorced without proving some atrocious act by one of the spouses. In legal language, this is known as an irretrievable breakdown of a marriage.

11 Sex and Love in Middle Adulthood At mid life, minor psychological changes occur in both male and female sexual systems.  For male: There may b lower levels of testosterone. Fewer sperm Slight changes in testes Changes in viscosity Volume of ejaculation Decrease in sex steroids affecting muscle tone and cardiovascular system. There is usually a need to spend more time and give more direct stimulation to penis to attain errection.  For females: The reduction in estrogen occurring during and after menopause may cause changes such as, Less vaginal lubrication Possible vaginal irritation Affect the ease and comfort of sexual intercourse. As with males, females need more time and appropriate stimulation for vaginal lubrication

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