The Case of Jaylene Smith



TheCase of Jaylene Smith

TheCase of Jaylene Smith

Thereare many aspects of Jaylene’s life that have had a direct impact ondevelopment of her personality. Most importantly, the environment inwhich she was brought up had an influence on her personality. Thisincludes her relationship with his father, brothers as well as hermother. Renowned personality theorists would have a diverse diagnosisof Joylene’s personality. In his personality theory, Sigmoid Freudargued that personality is based on ego, superego and Id. Freud woulddiagnose Jay case based on her extreme relationship with her parentsand its influence on the development of electra complex personality(Ellis et al, 2009). While he was very close to her father, herrelationship with her mother can be considered to be bad. Thisinfluenced the development of her emotions and how she reacts tosituations in adulthood. Jay was more attached to her father, theparent of the opposite sex and did not relate well with the parent ofthe same sex. As a result, Sigmoid would argue that the felling ofworthlessness can be associated with her experiences during thephallic stage of development. Thus, Sigmoid would propose mending therelationship between Jay and her mother has the first step intreating the personality problems.

CarlJung argued that individuals can either be extroverts or introverts.Introverts turn the attention of the world to themselves, whileextroverts turn the attention to the world (Schultz &amp Schultz,2012). Jung would diagnose Jay as an extrovert because she turns allher attention to the rests of the world. For example, she puts a lotof attention on creating a working romantic relationship, despite thefact that she is not able to deal with personal issues affecting herlife. She is more concerned about other people and how they view herrather than focusing on issues affecting her personal life. This iswhy she does not consider personal issues affecting her romanticrelationships, but is very concern about her unsuccessfulrelationships. Jung would recommend that Jay need to think aboutpersonal issues and focus more on them.

KarenHorney would base his diagnosis of Jay case on her childhoodrelationship with her parents and siblings. Due to her poorrelationship with the mother and the threat of her brother taking theparent’s attention resulting into jealous, it can be argued thatJay was a neurotic child. According to Horney, neurotic childhood hasa huge impact on personality development due to the anxiety andpossible depression associated with it (Schultz &amp Schultz, 2012).Possibly, Jay’s anxiety could have been as a result of lack ofmotherly love and overdependence of her father. The fact that herbrothers ganged against her risked her losing her fathers supportsresulting into anxiety. To address this challenge, Horney wouldpropose coping strategies that would progressively enable Jay to dealwith the effects of her childhood experiences.

EricErickson used similar approach to personality development withFreund. He argued that the development of identity, which is affectedby emotional attachments in different stages of development have ahuge impact on personality traits. Erickson argued that lifeexperiences in early stages of life have an impact on later stages.What is achieved in one stage of development affects the next stage(Engler, 2014). Thus, Jay’s problems can be associated withchallenges she faced at early stages of development. Erickson wouldpropose a treatment strategy based on traumatic events that occurredin his early life that had an impact on the development of herpersonality.

AlfredAlder would be based his diagnosis of Jay case on the development ofinferiority complex after the birth of her siblings. The fixation ofovercoming sibling rivalry by trying to be perfect always had anegative impact on her personality (Engler, 2014). Additionally, dueto her attachment to her father, who has a lot of achievements, shestrived to be better everyday to be like him or make him happy. As aresult, she developed personal inferiority which negatively affectedher social life. Thus, making Jay appreciate the fact that she doesnot need to be perfect or the best would be an appropriateintervention.

CarlRogers is another theorist who would have given an interestingdiagnosis of Jay’s case. Carl argued that authentic experiencesabout an individual’s own life at any stage of development have asignificant influence on growth and wellbeing and thus personality(Engler, 2014). Thus, Carl would be concerned with the relationshipbetween Jay and her father. Probably, this relationship exerted somepressure on her to achieve her goals and well as those set by herfather. Failure to achieve some of these goals would result into afeeling of worthlessness because she risked losing her only support.This is because without her father’s love and support, life wouldbe very difficult for her, since she did not have any emotionalattachment to her mother and the siblings had turned against her.This would result into a conditional positive reward as well as selfactualizing tendencies. Analyzing what motivates her and her personalgoals in life would be the first step towards developing a therapybased in this diagnosis.

Althoughit is correct to argue that the environment in which Jay was broughtup had a huge influence on her personality, it is also correct toargue that there are some personality traits she displayed that aresimilar to her parents traits. This is the foundation of GordonAllport personality theory. He argued that an individual personalityis influenced by both genotypes (internal forces within andindividual) and phenotypes (external forces in the environment) (Gian&amp Daniel, 2010). He would therefore conclude that some of thepersonality traits exhibited by Jay were inherited from her parents.This would require the diagnosis of her parents as well as hersibling to verify the hypothesis as well as develop an appropriatecoping strategy. Eysenck personality development theory was based onthree dimensions, namely psychoticism, neuroticism and extraversion(Ewen, 2010). He would have argued that the personality problemsexhibited by Jay were as a result of lack of balance between thethree dimensions of personality as well as emotional stability. Forexample, Jay is unable to focus on her problem. The relationshipswith her father also her less sensitive to issues that affects herlife.

Inconclusion, although they would use a different perspective, majorityof the theorists would have argued that Jay personality is largelyinfluence by the environment in which she was brought up. Her poorrelationship with her mother, perceived threats from the siblings andpampering by the father made Jay what she is. Although others may seeher has attractive and charming, she is not concerned about herselfand her adequacy. Jay case emphasizes the critical role of parentaland sibling relationships in the development of individual’spersonality.


Engler,B. (2014). Personalitytheories.Belmont: Wadsworth.

Ellis.A. et al (2009). Personalitytheories: critical perspectives.Los Angeles: SAGE Publications.

Ewen,R. (2010). Anintroduction to theories of personality.New York: Psychology Press.

GianV. &amp Daniel C. (2010). Personality: determinants, dynamics, and potentials,Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Univ. Press.

Schultz,D. &amp Schultz,S. (2012). Theoriesof Personality,Belmont, CA: Cengage Learning.