Final Project: Case Study – Michael’s Life Kathy Herman Psy 210 July 18, 2010 Beverly Salzman Final Project: Case Study – Michael’s Life Michael’s stress comes from the recent divorce ending a 15 year marriage and the inability to see his children as much as he would like. His employer’s announcement that do to budget constraints would result in layoffs is most certainly a big cause of stress. Without a job, he will not be able to support his children and maintain the townhouse he just purchased.
The stress is causing him to have chest pains and making his health decline.
The fear of dying and missing out on his children’s lives is also a big stress producer. Michael’s self-concept and self-esteem is being lowered by the stressors. The end of his 15 year marriage can make him feel like a failure because he was not able to make his marriage work, by not keeping his partner happy can cause him to have a very low self-esteem.
The inability to pay for his home or support his children will only make the situation worse. The fact that he is not able to see his children as much as he would like can make him think he is not a good father and lower his self-concept.
Having his children around him would be a big boost to his self confidence. Michael has shown that he has the ability to adjust by being able to continue with his everyday life by going to work. The end of his marriage and the fact that he cannot see his children every day is very hard on a person. Michael has been able to get a new house and continue on with his life. Michael has the opportunity to grow as an individual by continuing his daily life. He needs to go out and met new people by going out with co-workers and not dwell in the past.
Maybe even consider starting a new family. Michael has tried to deal with the stressors on his own with no help. Michael would benefit from a private therapy to talk about his marriage ending. This would be the best for Michael because this would allow him to talk about how this has made him feel, as well as teach him how to deal with those feeling. Group therapy would also help Michael by allowing him to listen to other people who have been thought the same situation as him, sometimes the best therapy is to hear that it has happened to someone else and they are getting through it.
Michael should also see a physician about his chest pains not only to take away some of the worry about it but to make sure that there is not a real problem there. The theory that best explains Michael’s situation is the social-cognitive theory. The social-cognitive theory explains that an individual and the environment work together to produce results. This theory claims that there are competencies; the skills and knowledge that we need to make an adjustment to our social environments.
Michael is currently lacking the competencies that he needs to overcome the distress that he is experiencing in his personal predictions about how thinks will turn out, he will improve his expectancies and his self-efficacy. This will boost his belief that he can do anything he puts his mind to. Michael needs to believe that he can overcome anything if he works at it with determination and strength. Michael is in the middle adulthood stage of development. In this stage, a lot of males tend to start looking back at their lives, rather than looking forward.
Michael is looking at his life from this perspective and thinking negatively about all of his failures. He may be experiencing a midlife crisis when he sees that at age 40, his career is not solid and he is divorced with two children to take care of. Rather than trying to rediscover the person he is, like some people do in middle adulthood, he is seeing himself as never accomplishing the goals that he set for his ideal self. Michael can defeat these challenges by looking ahead at the positive things that will influence his life in the near future.
Michael is depressed not only because the end of his marriage has affected him emotionally, financially, and mentally but it also affected his idea of family. His children must have been saddened when their father moved out, so the crumbling of his family is another reason for his misery. Michael is also struggling with dealing with Levinger’s sixth stage of relationship development. In Levinger’s sixth stage of development, a relationship has come to an end. Michael’s failed marriage is certainly a factor in the problems that he is encountering in his life.
He has to rebuild up from the bottom again. Suddenly, he is single. Being single again must be an enormous consideration for Michael. Starting over at middle age is not easy for anyone, especially when faced with financial insecurities. Michael must realize that a failed marriage is an opportunity for personal growth. Michael can reflect positively on this experience and understand why his marriage did not work. Once he makes these adjustments, he will be able to consider moving forward with his personal life.
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