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Toddlerhood: Separation–Individuation, Rapprochement, and the Forerunners of Superego Development 

Toddlerhood: Separation–Individuation, Rapprochement, and the Forerunners of Superego Development
Chapter:
Toddlerhood: Separation–Individuation, Rapprochement, and the Forerunners of Superego Development
Source:
The Little Book of Child and Adolescent Development
Author(s):

Karen J. Gilmore

and Pamela Meersand

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199899227.003.0003

In this chapter, the second and third years of life are described from the vantage point of the child’s emerging sense of self, including self-recognition, early gender awareness, enhanced realization of self-other differentiation and separation, and the appearance of self-conscious emotions such as pride and shame. The chapter explores the transformation of the toddler’s relational capacities as vastly increased language and symbolic capacities expand the available modes of parent—child affective sharing and interaction. Major developmental tasks of this phase, including the shifting responsibility from mother to child for bodily, behavioral, and emotional self-control, are discussed in the context of toilet training and its impact on mental life as well as through an examination of of the superego precursors that emerge during this phase of development.

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