Diving into Adlerian’s Theory and focus on family, there are three main components to take into consideration to define how children might be defined as adults. The three factors include: birth order, gender, and family values. Birth order can make a difference in defining adult personality and behaviors. Gender can play a role with its views of society and the acceptance of the up kept expectations.
Family values play a role simply because it defines who the family is and makes the future generations structured and stable. Adlerian’s Family Constellation Focusing on Birth Order, Gender, and Family Values Focusing on how one’s life may be affected behaviorally and psychologically can be based off of the factors that are out of an individual’s control. When stating this sentence, it may seem confusing to know that an individual had the possibility of being “judged” or “defined” on the day they were born.
With this being said, the uncontrollable, but life-shaping factors include birth order, gender, and family values. Although it is important to note that these factors will not always determine the life outcome of an individual, they will, however, create a formation of life for an individual to follow. Bringing attention to birth order first, knowing how the first born, middle, and last born child can be affected immediately can possibly define a lot about how the individual’s future could turn out. The first born child can often be described as the busy, attention receiver (Shulman & Mosak 1977).
On the flip side, the first born often is held to the highest expectations to uphold in the future due to the self control and respectful domineer they portray. The reason for this can be based off of the parent’s abilities to revolve their lives around engaging their child in multiple activities and organizations. This can have a lasting result on the child into adulthood in the case where they are attention seeking due to the loss of receiving it for the time they did when they were young (Carlson & Sperry 2006).
Next the focus moves to the middle child. The middle child seems to be the one getting loss in the mix and often found in a competition for attention (Shulman & Mosak 1977). In most cases, the middle child is one who does not get to participate in as many activities as the first born, but still gets involvement in major activities and functions (Shulman & Mosak 1977). The middle child can also sometimes be known as the “diplomat. ” They are this simply because they get caught up in the middle between the oldest and youngest sibling.
Often times it becomes natural responsibility for the middle child to be the mediator between siblings (Shulman & Mosak 1977). Finally we move onto the last born child, the “baby. ” The last born child can be defined as “ambitious. ” An explanation to support this statement is that the youngest sibling is often times surrounded by mature adults who seem to give much attention (Shulman & Mosak 1977). They also have this lifestyle due to being dependent on the older influences in their lives.
When this type of behavior is allowed at a young age, the child grows into adulthood with knowing no different. On the plus side of this, the ambition the youngest child displays can often times result in success and a bright future for the youngest born (Carlson & Sperry 2006). All in all, there can sometimes be more children in the mix, but results stay similar to the main three orders listed. Next the focus turns to gender effects on individuals as they enter adulthood from the Adlerian views’.
When a child is born, he or she is automatically placed into the acceptable gender roles of society. When this occurs and as the child ages, he or she will decided whether or not they want to accept, reject, or adapt to the role expectations that they are given (Lindsey & Christie 1997). This becomes very challenging to exactly define how an individual will be affected into adulthood due to the outside factors and influences that can take a toll on one’s life. Gender roles are something usually defined in childhood and carried into adulthood, ut as society changes and roles become more adverse, it is difficult to say how set and stone these roles will be (Carlson & Sperry 2006). Overall, it is obvious one picks up gender roles on the day they are born, but it is up to the individual themselves to decide whether or not they want to maintain those roles throughout their lifestyle. Finally family values come into the picture when defining an individual as an adult. Family values are not only just standards up kept by family, but more or less what create a baseboard for the function of a family.
There are multiple components that get taken into consideration when focusing just on family values and they are the beliefs, morals, and convictions that both the mother and father have implied to their family lifestyle (Juel 1993). With these factors being apparent at birth and throughout childhood, the individuals have choices as to whether or not they want to agree, disagree, or adopt their own family values. In most cases, children carry these values through adulthood which results in the family lifestyle getting pasted from generation to generation.
To sum it all up, it takes cooperation and trust for a family to clearly define and keep family values a tradition throughout a lifetime.
Carlson, J. , & Sperry, L. (2006). Adlerian therapy. Relationship Dysfunction: A Practitioner's Guide to Comparative Treatments, 102.
Juel, E. J. (1993). Non-Traditional Family Values: Providing Quasi-Marital Rights to Same-Sex Couples. BC Third World LJ, 13, 317.
Lindsey, L. L. , ; Christie, S. (1997). Gender roles. Prentice Hall.
Shulman, B. H. , ; Mosak, H. H. (1977). Birth order and ordinal position: Two Adlerian views. Journal of Individual Psychology, 33(1), 114-121.