Life Span Development – Essay Example

Life Span Development The Life Span of a person can be scientifically ified into six major developmental stages such as infancy, childhood, adolescence, youth, middle age, and old age. During the each stage of growth, significant physical and mental transformations take place in every individual. An individual’s outlook to friendship also changes according to each stage of his life cycle.
To being with, infancy is the opening point of a person’s life span in which he/she does not have the capacity to comprehend the surroundings. It is the only stage in which a person doesn’t have any friendship except the affectionate bond one has with one’s parents. As Erikson says, at each stage of life, ‘a person must develop an ego, capable of being further development of personality’ (cited in Slee 2002, p.53)
In the early childhood stage a person goes to the school where for the first time he gets number of friends of same age and thereby he develops both attitude and abilities. Friendship at this age seems greater than all other experiences to an individual that he would seek more time to spend with his friends. As the person grows and reaches middle childhood, he tends to move beyond the bonds of his family to be always with friends.
Adolescence is the age of colors in which a person begins to be more imaginative. This period transforms a person physically and mentally as he begins to think about his own identity and personal integrity. On the other hand, it is also a crucial point in which a person can be harmfully affected by friends and environmental aspects.
The cultural meaning of friendship again changes as the individual reaches early adulthood when he turned to be more practical about life. Individuals at this sage normally become curious about everything they come across. According to Erikson, “the adulthood stage focuses on if there is a sense of being productive, contributing member of the society (generativity) or whether one feels unable to contribute (stagnation)” (Tennant1988,p.38).
When he reaches at middle adulthood, the intensity of friendship gradually decreases by situational reasons such as family, responsibilities etc. and he tries to shrink to his family.
In short, an individual’s life from infancy to old age is subject to numerous changes, specifically with the considerable variation found in the intensity of friendship.
Tennant M. (1988). Psychology and Adult Learning. Taylor & Francis. Print
Slee, P.T. (2002). Child, Adolescent, and Family Development. (Edn 2), Cambridge-
University Press. Print