Cognitive Development Case of Anna and Jojo Term Paper

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Cognitive, Social, And Emotional Developmental Theories

Understanding the concept of child development is critical when the need to appreciate human interaction is required. This is because childhood memories and environments tend to affect their cognitive, social, and emotional development. In fact, children from different backgrounds tend to depict different adulthood behaviors unlike those with shared experiences. For instance, children born and raised in violent homes may become violent in their adulthood years or timid unlike those raised in happy homes. In addition, children who were neglected or sexually abused may develop feelings of insecurity. Various philosophers like Sigmund Feud and Jean Piaget have advanced numerous theories aimed at fostering the understanding of child development. This study endeavors to explore Piaget's cognitive development theory based on a hypothetical client's case.

Cognitive Development: Scenario 2: Anna and Jojo

Children who have a poor start or childhood problems early on in life have high chances of developing emotional, behavioral, or learning problems. Such a development may have serious consequences in their lives and that of their offsprings. For instance, a child who is bred in an abusive home tends to have disconcerting behavioral issues later in life. he/she may end up being an abusive parent or a shy one. Anna's poor parenting case can be attributed to her early childhood development. Her mother's constant outbursts that she is 'fat' and 'lazy' planted in her seeds of bitterness and self-esteem issues.

Children undergo various emotional, biological, and psychological changes during their growth and development. Cognitive development largely revolves around how children acquire, develop, and utilize internal mental abilities such as language, memory, and problem solving. The theory of cognitive development was largely advanced by Jean Piaget. He studied children from childhood to adolescence using naturalistic observation and clinical interviews. Piaget posited that people advance through four stages of development that permit them to reason in new and more complex ways. These stages include the sensorimotor stage, preoperational stage, concrete operational stage, and formal operational stage.

Sensorimotor stage

Piaget posits that an infant of seven to nine months develops object permanence. This implies that the infant develops the ability to understand that some objects exist even when they can no longer be seen.

Preoperational stage

Piaget argues that children begin analyzing or exploring their surrounding environment using mental symbols such as images and words. Therefore, children apply these symbols in their day-to-day lives as they come across different events, situations or events (Shaffer, 2009). However, Piaget posits that children at this stage cannot apply particular cognitive operations such as mental math.

Concrete stage

During this phase, children begin developing cognitive operations and start applying the new thinking according to the circumstances that they may encounter (Shaffer, 2009). Children can alter and rearrange mental symbols, and images to form logical thoughts.

Formal operations

Children at this stage possess the ability to think more systematically and rationally about hypothetical events and abstract concepts. Children may also begin forming their identity and start understanding why people behave in the way they do. Anna's current problems are a result of cognitive problems developed during her adolescence stage or the formal operations stage. From Piaget's perspective, children at this stage start forming their understanding and begin fathoming how people behave the way they do. As such, children may develop egocentric thoughts such as the personal fable and imaginary audience (Shaffer, 2009). Anna's only recollects how her mother frequently described her as 'fat' and 'lazy'. Anna grew up feeling that everyone was judgmental of her. Her mother's frequent outbursts reinforced the feelings of inadequacy and feeling unwanted.

How Anna was affected by social pressures from peers and parents during their early childhood development

During her early developmental stages, Anna was largely influenced by social pressures from her parents and peers. Anna's mother often rebuked and branded her as 'fat' and 'lazy'. As such, Anna grew up resenting herself as she always checked her image in the mirror and wishing that she were skinny like her mother. In addition, Anna's mother fed her on diet-food and yoghurt and encouraged her to exercise numerous times during the day.

Anna's peers also exerted some pressure on her. For instance, the football player that she hoped to date convinced her that she was too horrid and unsuitable for him. Eventually, she developed feelings of inadequacy and the need for validation. This was worsened by the experiences she encountered with the football player. He made her believe that no one will ever date her or be sexually active.

How Anna's response to that social pressure created their current problems

Anna's response to her parents and peer social pressure has played a crucial role to her current problems. Anna grew up resenting herself owing to her mother's frequent condemnation that she was lazy and fat. In her response to the pressure, Anna became fanatical about what she ate and started taking diet pills while in middle school. Anna also threw herself into numerous school activities hoping to be the president of every club and the top student in her classes. Her frequent mother's outbursts led her to develop eating disorders, making her suffer from poor nutrition. This condition persisted even to her pregnancy and post-pregnancy period. This is evidenced by the fact that Anna tried to lose weight hastily after giving birth.

Anna's response to social pressure has also influenced how she relates to her child, Jojo. The feeling of being unwanted both by her mother and her footballer boyfriend have made Anna neglect her child. This has also affected her self-esteem issues to the extent that she has suicidal thoughts. In addition, her mother's frequent outbursts that she is lazy and fat have influenced how she feeds Jojo. Anna feeds her child water and bananas to help Jojo lose weight just like her mother used to feed her on yoghurt and diet food.

Problems Anna is experiencing because of lack of emotional regulation

Lack of emotional regulation often poses numerous problems to people around her. Emotions often evolve from adaptive responses to personal problems and opportunities faced by people. Emotions can be either useful or harmful to the health and well-being of an individual. For instance, intense emotions may affect how someone interacts or behaves towards other people. For instance, an individual with social uneasiness may clench his hands to avoid shaking hands with people while an alcoholic will drink herself into oblivion after a messy divorce. Emotional regulation refers to the processes that help to reduce, maintain, or intensify one or more facets of emotion.

Anna mishandles her emotions by mistreating her child. Anna has conflicting emotions following her poor relationship with her mother. Anna lacked a loving and caring relationship with her mother who often accused her of being lazy and fat. She later developed negative emotions towards life and only exhibited them with the way she treated her child. Anna is experiencing numerous problems arising from the lack of emotional regulation. First, Anna is suffering from suicidal ideations. Anna grew up in a broken home since she only remembers how her mother branded her 'fat' and 'lazy'. Secondly, Anna suffers from behavioral problems because she cannot relate with her child. Anna also suffers from eating disorders. Her eating disorders can also be seen throughout her pregnancy period and after giving birth: she poorly fed her child.

Anna also suffers from self-esteem issues. Self-esteem implies a person's general emotional assessment of his/her own worth or one's attitude towards oneself. A person's self-esteem can be damaged when a child's most respected person constantly puts her down. Anna's mother constantly puts her down regarding her weight resulting in damaged self-esteem. Her self-esteem issues are evident from how she perceives life as she is filled with suicidal thoughts. Anna also possesses an inner critic that seems to find fault with her body size and weight. In addition, Anna needs constant validation from others despite its detrimental effects. This is confirmed by the fact that she believes what her boyfriend tells her. This only makes her life unbearable. She believes that she is too ugly to be dated by the football player and that nobody else wants her. Therefore, she falls for the player's sexual demand, which eventually culminates, into a pregnancy.

Appropriate interventions to help Anna become a responsible adult and parent

Various appropriate strategies can be used to ensure that Anna is a responsible parent and adult. An analysis of Anna's case indicates that Anna suffers from feelings of inadequacy and self-esteem issues. As such, Anna has numerous negative emotions and a negative attitude towards life (Shaffer, 2009). In order to resolve this problem, it is vital that Anna is advised on how to develop a positive mental attitude. Anna should be counseled to love herself and accept herself as she is. In addition, Anna should understand that how she views herself influences how people view her. Accepting her body size and the image will be helpful in making her be a responsible adult and parent.…[continue]

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