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It is in the family that he acquires many of the social patterns, habits, manners and attitudes which determine his future adjustment.Again it is here that he learns how to speak, talk, eat, wear clothes, live neatly and greet others respectfully.If caregivers are consistent sources of food, comfort, and affection, an infant learns trust- that others are dependable and reliable.
Highly restrictive parents, however, are more likely to instill in the child a sense of doubt, and reluctance to attempt new challenges.
As they gain increased muscular coordination and mobility, toddlers become capable of satisfying some of their own needs.
Trust as defined by Erikson is "an essential truthfulness of others as well as a fundamental sense of one's own trustworthiness." The infant depends on the parents, especially the mother, for sustenance and comfort.
The child's relative understanding of world and society come from the parents and their interaction with the child.
For example, if an infant enters into the toddler stage (autonomy vs.
shame & doubt) with more trust than mistrust, he or she carries the virtue of hope into the remaining life stages. The first stage of Erik Erikson's theory centers around the infant's basic needs being met by the parents and this interaction leading to trust or mistrust.For example, a child who enjoys music may like to play with the radio.Children who enjoy the outdoors may be interested in animals and plants.Each stage is characterized by a psychosocial crisis of these two conflicting forces (as shown in the table below).If an individual does indeed successfully reconcile these forces (favoring the first mentioned attribute in the crisis), he or she emerges from the stage with the corresponding virtue.It enriches human personality and adds grace to it.Russell says, “Home gives the child experience of affection and of a small community in which he is important.Each stage builds upon the successful completion of earlier stages.The challenges of stages not successfully completed may be expected to reappear as problems in the future.The parents' patience and encouragement helps foster autonomy in the child.Children at this age like to explore the world around them and they are constantly learning about their environment.