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What are the Psychosexual Stages Pt4

What are the Psychosexual Stages Pt4

Latency Period & Genital Stage

The phallic stage is followed by the latency period – emphasised to be a period rather than a stage per se – taking place between approximately age six and puberty.  This is a fallow period with no new libidinal development.  Impulses tend to be held in a state of repression or are redirected, gratification being related to secondary process thinking and achieved through, for example, school work, sports and hobbies.  From puberty onwards, triggered by physiological changes, unfolds the genital stage.  This final stage of psychosexual development leads to an adult expression of sexuality, unlike the pre-genital stages which are narcissistic in nature.  As the libido resurfaces, the main task is to separate from parents and establish a mature sexual relationship with a person of the opposite sex.  The genital stage is suggested to evolve through the sub-phases of puberty, adolescence and adulthood.

For many people these stages are overly simplistic and Freud has been criticised for overly simplifying these important developmental stages. Additionally, it has also been said that Freud had an unnecessary pre-occupation with the psychosexual stages when it comes to neurosis and other forms of mental disturbance. Whatever, the criticism, it cannot be denied that these stages are important to know about them at least from the premise of gaining additional information.

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