Eight Stages of Child Development - Essay Sample

Published: 2024-01-11
Eight Stages of Child Development - Essay Sample
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Child development
Pages: 5
Wordcount: 1255 words
11 min read


Erikson asserted that character evolves in a programmed process through the eight phases of psychosocial growth from early life stages to maturity. Throughout each step, the individual experiences a psychosocial predicament which might have a helpful or damaging result as the child grows. This paper's main objective is to apply Erikson's eight phases of infant growth to scheme how the child will grow in the future. It involves infant life during adolescents, middle adulthood, and older adulthood. It entails the time when a child is in teenage, median age, and maturity. The phases under which a teenager undergoes are deliberated below.

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Trust Versus Mistrust

According to Erikson, this stage is essentially when an infant is delivered up to the oldness of 12years. At this phase, the infant depends on the caregivers to cater to the basic needs. It is this phase when a baby might acquire a sense of confidence or suspicion. Neglectful parents who do not adequately provide the infant with necessities can put the infant's emotions into the uncertainty of nervousness, distress, and doubt (Schickedanz et al. 2018). The consequence is that the infant may perceive the world as an unfavorable residence to stay. Babies who are neglected or lack the elementary needs might probably grow up with a logic of suspicion for all persons around his life. It means that the child will either grow up with confidence or fear of the environment in which he grows, but this rests on how caring the parents are.

Autonomy Versus Shame

It is a phase of infant growth that ranges between the ages of 1-3years. During this development period, the child studies how to regulate their activities and conduct themselves accordingly to get results. The kid starts to display clear partialities for distinctive essentials of toys, food, and even clothes (Alwaely et al., 2020). At this phase, the child's fundamental obligation is to resolute the problem of independence vs. indignity and uncertainty by toiling to create freedom. If a teenager is deprived of the chance to act on his situation, he might start to suspect his capabilities, leading to low confidence and an emotional state of indignity.

Initiative Versus Guilt

It is the phase of infant growth when kids reach the pre-school stage. At this stage, the child begins to control the events around his surroundings and proclaiming regulation over their environment through social control and play. Bestowing to Erikson's theory, school-going children should remain resolute in their responsibilities of creativity vs. guilt. Such kids can accomplish this by understanding their responsibilities (Liming & Grube, 2018). The creativity and guilt phase occurs when parents permit their children to discover the limits within their lives and then support the teenager's decisions. Once the caregivers accomplish their duty at this phase, they attain a logic of confidence and feel treasured within the family. Those kids who do not prosper at this phase might grow up with an emotional state of guilt.

Industry Versus Inferiority

At this phase in child growth, the teenager starts acquiring necessary skills such as reading and writing. At this moment, somebody cannot ignore an educator's responsibility because they assist in imparting knowledge and skills to children as they grow. During this phase, a teen's peer group advances suggestively, and these clusters turn out to be the leading cause of a child's self-confidence (Chung, 2018). While the child grows, he senses the importance of winning support by signifying precise capabilities that are respected by the public. The teenager advances a logic of pride for their achievement. If a teenager is given enough support from parents and educators, they cultivate the sense of capability in whatsoever they do and obtains the aptitude to accomplish their life objectives. If the teenager does not receive the backing and is restricted by parents and educators, he starts to feel less important, and therefore they may not reach their full potential. At this stage, children develop self-confidence, and parents and educators determine the child's capabilities.

Identity Versus Role Confusion

This phase occurs between the ages of 12-18. It is when a teenager pursues their real self and individual character, principles, and life objectives. During this phase, a child gains his individuality and surveys his professional and sexual duty in the community (Knight, 2017). The adolescent's body starts to change, and they have a habit of discovering life opportunities. Failure for a teenager to recognize their worth within the community, it may result in misperception. Misperception affects the child's success because they are not sure about themselves and their humanity's responsibilities.

Intimacy Versus Isolation

The phase occurs all through the early maturity, which is the ages of 18 to 40. Throughout this phase, several battles escalate in a person's lifetime as they start to practice intimacy and be involved in love affairs. It leads to a lasting union with someone else rather than a close family member. Fruitful matters might lead to a joyful affiliation and a logic of obligation, safety, and overhaul within an association. In case a person avoids intimacy at this period, it can lead to loneliness, solitude, and occasionally hopelessness. Nevertheless, if a person prospers in this phase, the virtue of love is endorsed in his lifetime.

Generativity Versus Stagnation

It is the period that takes place during the ages of 40 to 65 (Darling-Fisher, 2019). It is the moment in a person's life to give back to society by raising families and participating in public work. Triumph at this phase leads to the emotions of worthiness and success, while failure results in low participation in social activities. By failing at this stage, an individual becomes stagnant and feels unproductive. Such an individual might feel disengaged with social conceptions and with the society at large. Accomplishment in this phase would lead to the virtue of care.


This period starts at around the age of 65 and ends upon demise. Through this period, people anticipate their life achievements and can develop integrity with themselves after leading a fruitful life. At this development stage, people reflect on their lifetime and might be remorseful for not attaining their life objectives and would likely experience emotions of resentment and anguish. In conclusion, by using the Eriksson phases of psychosocial growth, we can determine how a teenager will grow from early to maturity. Achievement in one phase guarantees victory in the subsequent degree and failure in one step can lead to a loss in the rest of life stages.


Alwaely, S. A., Yousif, N. B. A., & Mikhailov, A. (2020). Emotional development in preschoolers and socialization. Early child development and care, 1-10.

Chung, D. (2018). The eight stages of psychosocial protective development: Developmental psychology. Journal of Behavioral and Brain Science, 8(06), 369.

Darling-Fisher, C. S. (2019). Application of the modified Erikson psychosocial stage inventory: 25 years in review. Western Journal of Nursing Research, 41(3), 431-458. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/03004430.2020.1717480

Knight, Z. G. (2017). A proposed model of psychodynamic psychotherapy linked to Erik Erikson's eight stages of psychosocial development. Clinical psychology & psychotherapy, 24(5), 1047-1058. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/cpp.2066

Liming, K. W., & Grube, W. A. (2018). Wellbeing outcomes for children exposed to multiple adverse experiences in early childhood: A systematic review. Child and Adolescent Social Work Journal, 35(4), 317-335. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10560-018-0532-x

Schickedanz, A., Halfon, N., Sastry, N., & Chung, P. J. (2018). Parents’ adverse childhood experiences and their children’s behavioral health problems. Pediatrics, 142(2), e20180023. https://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/142/2/e20180023.short.

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