Social relationships and the attachments that follow are incredibly interesting subjects within psychology. The variations, complexity, and importance of these concepts make it even more fascinating. Social relationships change across the lifespan in a variety of ways, and its characterizations can be altered through our attachments. There are basic similarities among our infantile attachment to those that form as we age, but that attachment becomes so much more complex and adjusts to suit our developmental tasks. Young adults are faced with an important developmental task in regards to intimate relationships. The question in differentiating between liking an individual and loving them arises frequently. With this being said, romantic social relationships preoccupy young adults development more so than younger age grades.
As previously mentioned, a variety of attachments ensue social relationships; these attachments mold differently to what each age grade needs developmentally, especially young adults. Attachment is defined as “a strong affectional tie that binds a person to an intimate companion” (450). This concept emerges around six to seven months of age, and is directed towards our parents (to mother first more so than father) or direct caregiver (450). At such a young age, an infant shows its attachment towards it’s caregiver by “crying, clinging, approaching, following, doing whatever it takes to maintain closeness to her and expressing displeasure when they cannot” (450). These basic characteristics of attachment are quite similar, but are expressed differently as we grow. Other age groups like, for instance, young adults would differentiate in the way they...
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... like…togetherness or something”. Their definition of love contains key intimacy characteristics with definitions like “integral part of whom you are”, “deep connection”, “happiness”, and “togetherness”. This individual touches upon love in a much more meaningful and emotional closeness compared to the previous individual who’d described it in a more physical and excitable manner. This form of love follows passion, and plays a role in the future commitment of two individuals. Like passion, this concept is also a stepping stone towards allowing young adults to complete their task of intimacy vs. isolation. Intimacy greatly influences romantic relationships, and is a concept that many young adults preoccupy themselves with during their development.
Sigelman, C., & Rider, E. (2012). Life- span human development . (7th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth
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