The subject of this study, Alex, is a 32 year old single Caucasian male who works as an Addictions Counselor to adolescents and lives in a house he bought with his then-fiancee 5 years ago. He describes his leisure activities as drinking, watching television, playing video games, and listening to music. He tells this interviewer that most of his free time is spent by himself pursuing these endeavors. At age 32, Alex is in Erik Erikson's Stage 6, Young Adulthood (which spans the ages of 19 to 40), and Daniel J. Levinson's Early Adulthood (spanning the ages of 22 to 49).
According to Erikson, the typical developmental conflict of Young Adulthood is intimacy vs. isolation, with love relationships being the most important events. Levinson says that Early Adulthood is characterized by energy, contradiction, and stress with the major tasks of pursuing aspirations, raising a family, and establishing a senior position in the adult world.
Alex has not handled this stage of his life well. When asked, he says that this period of his life started out as the best, most fulfilling stage of his life. He had close friends whom he spent time with, and a girlfriend he loved.
Alex states that this time period in his life has drastically changed as he became older, however, and says he no longer feels satisfied or fulfilled with his life. As Alex entered Young/Early Adulthood, he was madly in love with his high school sweetheart, Lynne. The two of them excluded the rest of the world, including their own friends, and devoted themselves to each other. Alex said he lost touch with his good friends during this time period, and never really re-established the relationships with them.
Alex and Lynne planned to marry as soon as they finished college. But Alex said...