Owww! Ahhhhh! Hurts! Mommy! Daddy! Hold me, hug me... Mmmm... Mmmm... still hurts... scared... scared...Owww! What!? I'm okay!? Did you really say, "You're okay" to me just right now?" Look at my face! Owww! Ahhhhh! Don't tell me that red mark is no big deal! Hurts... hurts bad! Look at that wet stuff -- those are tears. Owww! Ahhhhh! Are you stupid or something? You are the grown up -- I'm the kid. Can't you tell how I feel? I'm okay!? I'm okay.... No way I'm okay! Don't tell me I can't... Ahhhhh!... be me. Don't deny me what's real to me. Owww! Ahhhhh! Owww! Ahhhhh!
Water... water... water... gotta find water. Wonderful smooth water. It feels so neat. It goes through my fingers... on my face... in my mouth... everywhere. Water... water... where the water? Go wash up for snack? Wash my hands with... water! Oooooo! Cool water... warm water... splish splash... water in the sink... water on the walls... splish splash... water on the floor... Oooooo! Stop it!? But... Oh, all right. Snack time... what's for snack? Crackers, a piece of the apple, and juice... juice? Juice! Looks like water... with color and pulp... and a different taste! Oooooo! It goes through my fingers... splish splash... on my face... in my mouth... everywhere... splish splash. Oooooo! Stop it!? Mess? Oh, all right... Time to paint. Painting is fun. All the pretty colors... brushes too. The paint looks kind of creamy -- not like water exactly. I wonder how it feels? Oooooo! ... running over my fingers. Smear it. It's more fun than using the brush -- swirl it here -- swirl it there... Oooooo! What? Stop it?! But but... oh, okay. Go out to play? Okay. It's nice outside. Oooooo! It rained last night! There's puddles! Oooooo! Splish splash! Splish splash with my hands! Splish splash with my feet! Oooooo! With mud! Oooooo! ... my fingers... on my face... on the fence... on Jenny! On Greg! Cool! Stop it!? Why? Mess? But... Oh, all right... Almost time for lunch? Time to go potty? Okay. Go inside to the bathroom... with the sink and... the toilet!! Oooooo!! Oooooo!! YES!!
Development is sequential. Development happens in a predictable order. There are first, second, third, and so forth stages in every area of development. For example, in order babies wave their arms and kick their legs before they can roll over and push up; then sit up; then crawl; finally, walk and then run.Development is progressive. The challenges and successes (and the failures and incomplete accomplishments) of earlier development build for (or cause problems for) future development. For example, the development of secure attachment with primary caregivers (normally, the parents) give individuals the ability to risk and succeed at attachments with in subsequent relationships. Conversely, insecure attachments with primary caregivers make it difficult for children (even as adults) to form secure attachments.Attempting to rush or skip development is harmful, causes problems,... and doesn't work! Developmental needs and challenges, including sequence and progression needs are intrinsic. If you attempt to ignore them, the intrinsic developmental energy will continue to assert itself until the needs are met. For example, many babies have a very strong oral need. For various reasons (cultural, recommendations from family or "experts," inconvenience), some parents try to keep babies and children from sucking on things -- including pacifiers and their thumbs. Despite a lot of work, children often continue into Kindergarten and beyond putting things into their mouths. The oral need continues to assert itself. In fact, there are theories relating unfulfilled oral needs from childhood to eating disorders, alcoholism and drug abuse.Trauma, abuse, and intense stress can cause individuals to regress or get stuck developmentally. When faced with intense stress, children (and adults) may emotionally or psychologically regress to an earlier developmental stage where they hope to be taken care of -- to be nurtured as babies and protected. For children, it may mean getting whiny and pouting and waiting for someone to feel sorry for them... "You know what Susie did to me!?" For adults thing, it may mean getting whiny and pouting and waiting for someone to feel sorry for them! "You know what the boss (my wife, my husband, the clerk...) did to me!?" Developmentally stuck individuals function from a time when trauma or abuse occurred. As adults we have experienced adults, who acted like a two year old throwing a tantrum... or seemed like a defiant adolescent. Individuals suffering trauma or abuse may get emotionally or psychologically stuck at that developmental age. This creates complex issues that may be problematic throughout their entire lives.Satiation of developmental needs helps individuals progress developmentally. Movement through the sequences and the progression of development depends on the needs of the stage being satisfied -- satiated. Skipping or rushing development does not allow for needs to be completely satiated. Trauma, abuse, and intense stress can overwhelm the developmental capacities of an individual -- by definition, are outside the capacities of developing individuals. They draw the individual's focus away from satisfying their developmental needs. Recognizing needs as developmental and facilitating the complete satisfaction of these needs becomes the key to helping individuals progress.
DOGGIE...DOGGIE... NOT DOGGIE? RABBIT!!
Mmmm? No, you didn't tell me not to jump on Auntie Nan's lap. You told me not to jump on Grandma's lap. Remember I'm only four? You told me, but I am an existential child -- that means that was then... and this is now! I live in the moment! Before? Before is when you were a kid... when the dinosaurs ruled the earth... five minutes ago... two days... two months... ten years ago... when George Washington chopped that cherry tree... you told me not to jump on Grandma's lap. That is not Grandma! That is Auntie Nan. They look kinda alike because they're sisters!
How was I to know that the underlying principle of not jumping on Grandma's lap is that Grandma is an old lady... and that old ladies might have osteoporosis... and may be somewhat brittle! And that jumping on her might scrunch her! And then I was supposed to figure out that since Auntie Nan is an old lady too, I shouldn't jump on her either because she is scrunchable too!! Jeez! I'm four!! -- a preoperational child!? Not even a concrete operations child yet! Let alone a formal operations child when I finally am supposed to be able to do divergent thinking! NO, YOU DIDN'T TELL ME!!