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FRom the book theories and practices of counseling and psychotherapy By Gerald Corey
Pages 20 (5020 words)
Psychoanalytic Theory The Psychoanalytic theory is premised on the belief that human nature is greatly affected by a person’s early childhood experiences and conflicts between impulses and prohibitions. The complicated theories developed by Sigmund Freud became highly controversial especially in the era they were presented due to the fact that it involved psychosexual issues considered “taboo” at the time.
His idea of the three systems of personality, the id, ego and superego being in constant battle is likened to a person’s continual debate of what is right and wrong, and then behaves according to his moral decisions. Such decisions are affected by what society dictates as well as what the person truly desires for himself. To survive living with negative experiences that may have marred a person’s personality or life views, he develops “defense mechanisms” that aim to keep those traumatic experiences repressed in the unconscious. These defense mechanisms are usually practiced by everyone in their daily life not knowing that they are applications of Freudian thought. An example of a defense mechanism commonly used is ‘rationalization’. If a person has strived hard to reach a goal like applying for a certain job position and does not get it, he would rationalize to his family that he was not so interested in it after all. It is much like the fabled fox “sour-graping”. This is an attempt to mask his utter disappointment and maintain an “unaffected” facade to the people around him. ...
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