Self and Identity


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Essay Option #5
Self and Identity

     The better which a person develops an understanding of themselves and of the other people around them, the better able they will be able to develop intimate relationships. A person who has a negative model of self and has a negative model of others , otherwise known as Fearful, is going to shy away from attachment and be socially avoidant which obviously is going to affect the crisis of intimacy versus isolation. The example describes a person who is hesitant to make long term commitments and resists urges to display intimacy, but is capable of forming a dependency on him by the other in the relationship. A Preoccupied person has a negative self model and a positive model of others. They often tend to be overly dependent and ambivalent. The example suggests a person who might be shy and conservative but is capable of not displaying their awkward feelings to the other person. A Secure individual has a positive model of self and others. They are comfortable with intimacy and autonomy and often do not have a difficult time in forming intimate relationships. The example describes this person as someone who is very capable of healthy relationships and good communication skills. It seems like a secure person has all the good qualities that any relationship requires. And finally, a Dismissing person has a positive model of self but a negative model of others. They are characterized by denying attachment and their counter dependency. All of the differences among the different models result from past experiences in the individual’s life. How they were raised in terms of different parenting styles and methods of child raising affect an individuals internal working models of self and others.
     Attachment styles of Secure individuals are described as passionate and selfless. They have high levels of intimacy, passion and are very committed and able to be trusted. This reminds me of the perfect girlfriend. I don't see a lot of jealously and bizarre head games coming from a secure person. They are highly self confident and low on self consciousness with their partner. They tend not to fear being close to another person and yet are not likely to go out of their mind when things don't feel right. Avoidant people are known for their head games. They tend to be low in terms of intimacy, passion and commitment. This reminds me of a relationship my roomate has with his girlfriend.

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They are both madly in love with each other and yet all they do is fight over stupid little game they play with each other. Neither one of them are faithful to the other and they rarely speak encouragingly of their relationship. They are both very self conscious and yet still interdependent on each other for support. An Ambivalent person tends to be very possessive of other individuals in a relationship with them. They tend not to be very passionate and trustworthy in terms of commitment. As its described in the worksheet that they are high on pre occupation, dependence, and idealization. They are known to be self conscious and yet still willing to initiate intimate relationships.
     Differences in internal working models of self and others as well as differences in attachment styles can be accredited to various influences. For example secure individuals have memories of their parents being warm and affectionate while Ambivalent people tend to remember their father being unfair. Differences in attachment beliefs and attitudes such as the amount of self doubts and self worth one has and ones ability to understand others are obvious from secure to ambivalent. Secure people tend to feel that others are trustworthy and dependable while avoidant folks think that social situations are difficult to understand. And finally while avoidant people need to maintain distance in relationships, secure and ambivalent people desire intimate relationships but vary in degree of intimacy. These differences stem from the individuals perception of others and where he/she fits into reality. People act how they think they are suppose to, so their perception of reality is a major factor in determining how they act in , and while establishing intimate relationships.
     Identity achievement comes from many years of exploring different roles and personalities. Like we discussed in class individuals can change their attitudes and personalities almost daily. As the person is trying new things he/she is also taking cues form society as to which role or personality they fit best. How and individual perceives these cues will determine how they choose which personality or role is right for them. As we move from secure people to ambivalent we can see varying levels of self consciousness and self worth. These two characteristics are primary in forming intimacy. A persons internal working models are directly affecting that persons ability to perceive reality which is essentially the struggle for identity. So as the characteristics of self and others as well as attachment styles, are approaching security, strength, worth, and importance the better able that person is at creating, maintaining, and enjoying themselves and others.


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