Parental behavior is crucial to normal and abnormal development. Personality and mental health problems in adulthood can usually be traced back to the first five years. Sources of pleasure are determined by the location of the libido life-force. As a child moves through different developmental stagesthe location of the libido, and hence sources of pleasure, change Freud,
Alexander In many cases, addiction theorists have now progressed beyond stereotyped disease conceptions of alcoholism or the idea that narcotics are inherently addictive to anyone who uses them. Yet this new theoretical synthesis is less than meets the eye: It mainly recycles discredited notions while including piecemeal modifications that make the theories marginally more realistic in their descriptions of addictive behavior.
These theories are described and evaluated in this chapter as they apply to all kinds of addictions. They are organized into sections on genetic theories inherited mechanisms that cause or predispose people to be addictedmetabolic theories biological, cellular adaptation to chronic exposure to drugsconditioning theories built on the idea of the cumulative reinforcement from drugs or other activitiesand adaptation theories those exploring the social and psychological functions performed by drug effects.
While most addiction theorizing has been too unidimensional and mechanistic to begin to account for addictive behavior, adaptation theories have typically had a different limitation.
In this way drugs are seen as a way to cope, however dysfunctionally, with personal and social needs and changing situational demands.
Yet these adaptation models, while pointing in the right direction, fail because they do not directly explain the pharmacological role the substance plays in addiction.
At the same time their purview is not ambitious enough not nearly so ambitious as that of some biological and conditioning models to incorporate nonnarcotic or nondrug involvements.
They also miss the opportunity, readily available at the social-psychological level of analysis, to integrate individual and cultural experiences. This addictive inheritance has been most studied in the case of alcoholism. Studies endeavoring to separate genetic from environmental factors, such as those in which adopted-away offspring of alcoholics were compared to adopted children with nonalcoholic biological parents, have claimed a three to four times greater alcoholism rate for those whose biologic parents were alcoholic Goodwin et al.
Vaillant l approvingly cited the Goodwin et al.
Since these subjects were reared by their natural families, however, this finding does not distinguish effects of alcoholic environment from inherited dispositions. Vaillant did find that subjects with alcoholic relatives they did not live with were twice as likely to become alcoholic as subjects who had no alcoholic relatives at all.
The chief of these is ethnicity: Irish Americans in this Boston sample were seven times as likely to be alcohol dependent as were those of Mediterranean descent.
Controlling for such large ethnicity effects would surely reduce the 2 to 1 ratio for subjects with alcoholic relatives compared to those without in alcoholism substantially even as other potential environmental factors that lead to alcoholism besides ethnicity would still remain to be controlled for.
Vaillant reported two other tests of genetic causality in his sample. Proposing genetic mechanisms in alcoholism on the basis of concordance rates does not provide a model of addiction.
What are these mechanisms through which alcoholism is inherited and translated into alcoholic behavior? Even the most severely alcoholic individuals "clearly demonstrate positive sources of control over drinking behavior" so that "extreme drunkenness cannot be accounted for on the basis of some internally located inability to stop" Heather and Robertson Intriguingly, controlled-drinking theorists like Heather and Robertson propose exceptions to their own analyses: Perhaps "some problem drinkers are born with a physiological abnormality, either genetically transmitted or as a result of intrauterine factors, which makes them react abnormally to alcohol from their first experience of it" Heather and Robertson While it is certainly a fascinating possibility, no research of any type supports this suggestion.
Vaillant found that self-reports by AA members that they immediately succumbed to alcoholism the first time they drank were false and that severe drinking problems developed over periods of years and decades. The exceptions to this generalization were psychopaths whose drinking problems were components of overall abnormal lifestyles and behavior patterns from an early age.
However, these kinds of alcoholics showed a greater tendency to outgrow alcoholism by moderating their drinking Goodwin et al. Prospective studies of those from alcoholic families also have failed to reveal early alcoholic drinking Knop et al.
Findings like these have led genetic theorists and researchers instead to propose that the inherited vulnerability to alcoholism takes the form of some probabilistically greater risk of developing drinking problems. The emphasis is instead on such biological abnormalities as the inability to discriminate blood alcohol level BALwhich leads alcoholics to show less effect from drinking and to drink more without sensing their condition Goodwin ; Schuckit Alternately, Schuckit proposed that alcoholics inherit a different style of metabolizing alcohol, such as producing higher levels of acetaldehyde due to drinking.
Finally, Begleiter and other theorists have proposed that alcoholics have abnormal brain waves prior to ever having drunk or that drinking creates unusual brain activity for them Pollock et al.
All these theorists have indicated that their results are preliminary and require replication, particularly through prospective studies of people who become alcoholics.There are dozens of personality theories.
It is possible to introduce only a few of the most influential. For clarity, we will confine ourselves to three broad perspectives: (1) Psychodynamic Theories, which focus on the inner workings of personality, especially internal conflicts and struggles, (2) Behavioristic Theories, which place greater .
Personality Theory A Brief Survey of the Field Today and Some Possible Future Directions Robert E. Beneckson The scientific study of personality as a focus within the larger field of psychology must begin with a definition of the term itself. home / study / social sciences / psychology / psychology definitions / psychodynamic theory Psychodynamic Theory In psychology, a psychodynamic theory is a view that explains personality in terms of conscious and unconscious forces, such as unconscious desires and beliefs.
Psychodynamic therapy is similar to psychoanalytic therapy in that it is an in-depth form of talk therapy based on the theories and principles of psychoanalysis.. But psychodynamic therapy is less. Learn about personality psychology with an explanation of the theories and important figures in the study of personality.
What is this thing we call personality? Consider the following definitions, what do they have in common? "Personality is the dynamic organization within the individual of those psychophysical systems that determine his characteristics behavior and .