psychosexual development

psychosexual development
the process by which an individual becomes more mature in his sexual feelings and behaviour. Gender identity, sex-role behaviour, and choice of sexual partner are the three major areas of development. The phrase is sometimes used specifically for a sequence of stages, supposed by psychoanalytic psychologists to be universal, in which oral, anal, phallic, latency, and genital stages successively occur. These stages reflect the parts of the body on which sexual interest is concentrated during childhood development.

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1. a general term for the developing sexuality of the individual as affected by biological, cultural, and emotional influences from prenatal life onward through the life cycle. 2. in psychoanalysis, libidinal maturation from infancy through adulthood (in classic psychoanalysis including the oral, anal, and genital stages). One schema is Erikson's eight stages of development.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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