Life Transition Problems
From our birth to our eventual death, we go through a number of life transitions. Major transitions are from infancy to preschool, to middle childhood, to adolescence, to adulthood, to old age and death. During each stage, specific developmental tasks such as physical, emotional, cognitive, language, social relationships, and personality require successful negotiation in order to adequately transition into the next stage of life. Due to life circumstances, people can have disruptions during certain stages, which can cause problems later in life.
For instance, a child whose mother suffered from depression may not have been able to develop a close bond with her. This disruption to the child’s need to experience a healthy bond with a parent or significant caregiver can cause difficulties in the child’s ability to build healthy bonds with peers and later with a potential marriage partner.
Another example, a teenager may experience rejection from his or her first love. Due to a lack of parental or social support, this painful emotional experience can go unprocessed leaving the teenager feeling inadequate and stuck. Such an experience could lead to depression, anger, and future relationship difficulties.
Other more common life transitions that people experience are single people transitioning into marriage, a married couple transitioning to become parents, male and female menopause, the empty-nest stage, career transitions, and transitions into retirement. Most of these life transitions come with their own set of positives; however, they also come with a level of stress that requires good management in order to work through them successfully. With every life transition, there is a letting go in order to move forward. For instance, married people need to let go of their singleness, parenting requires the letting go of time that was set aside for couple or individual interests, getting older requires the acceptance of physical decline, retirement requires the letting go of position and a certain level of identity.
Each transition has a certain level of grief that needs to be process. That which is lost needs acknowledging and let go. Each person experiences these transitions differently. One person may find adjusting to married life very stressful while another may find the empty-nest stage more stressful. Sometimes people are often confused as to why or what they are feeling when going through these changes. Some people are unaware that they are in fact going through a life transition phase adding to the confusing feelings, which seem unconnected to anything.