Understanding Normal and Abnormal Behavior Essay


The intent of this survey is to better understand the difference between normal and unnatural behaviour in society. Everyone has their ain perceptual experience of what is normal and what is unnatural and live their lives consequently. The intent here is show that there is no definite manner of life and that we each unrecorded by guidelines that are formed by society and are forced onto us. which we so force onto others. In the ceaseless pursuit for success and felicity.

households are bombarded with information about how a purportedly normal household manages. Everything from raising kids to deciding struggle to how frequently people should do love seems to be compared to somebody’s thought of the norm. I besides discuss the significance of riotous behaviour in society which sets the land for separating normal and unnatural behaviour.


Human behaviour is different wholly over the universe. Society is different and hence different things are expected of different people. Most people live harmonizing to what they believe is expected by their society and civilization.

Peoples believe that in every civilization there is a „right? manner to populate and a „wrong? manner. There is a perceptual experience on how people should populate. work. where they should work. why they should work. what they should eat. where they should. where their childs should play. travel to school. what they should study…etc. It?s as if there is this „life handbook? being handed down from coevals to coevals which has ALL the replies.

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Apparently every civilization has one and EVERYONE knows it by bosom and expects everyone else to populate consequently. Peoples don?t acquire along. there is changeless struggle between who has to hold what and everyone believes they are right. Where do we pull the line between normal and unnatural human behaviour? Who is right?

How can we ourselves differentiate between the two so that our lives don?t start and terminal in struggle? The reply is to better understand what normalcy and abnormalcy truly is. The importance of holding replies to these inquiries lies in the fact that the wider our perceptual experience is on normalcy and abnormalcy the more tolerant we are of each others? behaviour. thoughts. and life picks. Alternatively. most civilizations have developed widely used positions on is accepted and what is non. go forthing really small for persons to make up one’s mind on for themselves. Each and every event that has taken topographic point in our lives has left an imprint on our minds. We reflect on these imprints. what we know as memories. and develop our ain personal theories. When these thoughts and picks clash with those of what is accepted by society. the term “abnormal behavior” seems to demo its face.

One of the first things to understand is that normal is non a equivalent word for stable. Normalcy is of all time altering. What is considered normal today will shortly be replaced by what is normal in the hereafter. Because people determine what is normal. every clip social values change their sentiment of what is normal will alter. The household has changed deeply over the past 50 old ages. What was considered normal hardly a coevals ago may be viewed as quaint or hopelessly outdated. Notice how the construction of American households has basically shifted in recent old ages: “The idealised norm of the modern atomic household has given manner to a multiplicity of household agreements. . . The 1950’s theoretical account of the White middle-class atomic household headed by a breadwinner-father and supported by a full-time homemaker-mother is presently found in merely eight per centum of U. S. families. Dual earning has become the norm for married twosomes. . .

Through the influence of the women’s motion and swerve economic necessity. about 70 per centum of female parents of school-age kids. . . are in the work force. With a divorce rate at 50 per centum. over one-third of all kids will populate. at some point. in a single-parent household. Since the huge bulk of divorced persons go on to remarry. stepfamilies are expected to go the most common household signifier by the twelvemonth 2000? ( Froma Walsh. Family Business Review. Vol. VII. No. 2. summer 1994. Jossey-Bass Publishers. “Healthy Family Functioning: Conceptual and Research Developments. ” p. 176 ) . Other factors. excessively. influence society’s definition of what is normal. Family structures can change greatly across racial and cultural lines every bit good as by income degrees. Given the variables. finding what is normal has become about hopelessly complicated. Adding to the confusion. readings of normality are frequently used interchangeably with footings such as healthy. typical and functional. which besides have their several significances.

Still another issue is the desire of some little groups. frequently stand foring merely a bantam per centum of society. to hold their “lifestyle” picks recognized and accepted as normal. This definition of what is normal has been debated and stretched so many ways it is virtually nonmeaningful.

Definitions of Normal

Acknowledging that readings of what is considered normal vary well in the societal scientific disciplines. Froma Walsh has identified four positions to assist people understand what other people consider to be normal. They are. she says. “normal as symptomless. normal as norm or typical. normal as ideal or optimum. and normal in relation to systemic transactional processes” ( Walsh. p. 176 ) . Recognize that each definition. while assisting specify what is normal. besides has its restrictions. The “normal as asymptomatic” position is a medical position of households who are considered normal and healthy if no wellness jobs are evident.

Yet. as Dr. Walsh acknowledges. “healthy household working involves more than the absence of jobs and can be found in the thick of jobs. . . No households are free of problems” ( Walsh. p. 177 ) . “Normal as norm or typical” utilizations statistical norms to categorise households. If a household matches certain forms. it is considered normal. Often a bell-shaped curve is used to specify normal. with households in the in-between scope considered normal and those on the extremes viewed as divergences to be avoided. A failing of this concept is that optimally working families— those that exceed the in-between scope or average—are categorized as abnormal.

There is a belief on how one should take part in society and those who do non desire to populate within the parturiency of cultural “rules” are shunned and in some instances looked down upon and are labeled “abnormal” . When people do non follow the norms of society they are believed to hold unnatural behaviour. Personally. I believe that the term “abnormal” is used when human behaviour and beliefs are non good understood. Society separates the people who choose to populate otherwise. But how can we judge when we are non certain of what is meant by abnormalcy. The definition of the word abnormal is simple plenty: deviating from the norm.

However. using this to psychology airss a complex job: what is normal? Whose norm? For what age? For what civilization? Some would merely sort what is “good” as normal and what is “bad” as unnatural. but this is a obscure and narrow definition and brings up many of the same inquiries for the definition of “good” as does the definition for “normal” . There are many more ways of finding a more nonsubjective mention point. A really simple thought that can be used to sort unnatural behaviour is personal hurt. Basically. if a individual is content with their life. so they are of no concern to the mental wellness field. However. if a person’s ideas or behaviours are doing them personal uncomfortableness or sadness. so they will be considered unnatural.

The most common standard for specifying abnormalcy. nevertheless. is maladaptiveness. There are two facets of maladaptive behaviour: 1. Maladaptive to one’s ego: Inability to make ends. to accommodate to the demands of life. 2. Maladaptive to society: Interferes. disrupts societal group operation.

This type of definition allows much flexibleness. It provides room for conforming behaviour to society’s norms every bit good as aberrant behaviour every bit long as it is non self-damaging. It makes unnatural the comparative term it needs to be. dependent upon each individual’s life and fortunes. There are certain classs of behaviour that suggest the presence of psychological upsets which are. in one manner or another. maladaptive in that they threaten the wellbeing of the person. These classs include long periods of uncomfortableness. impaired operation. eccentric behaviour. and riotous behaviour.

Long Time periods of Discomfort

Given. everyone experiences some sort of psychological uncomfortableness during their life. This could be anything every bit simple as worrying about a calculus trial to sorrowing the decease of a loved 1. This hurt. nevertheless. is related to existent. related. or threatened events and passes off with clip. When such distressful feelings. nevertheless. persist for an drawn-out period of clip and look to be unrelated to events environing the individual. they would be considered unnatural and could propose a psychological upset.

Impaired Functioning

Here. once more. there must be made a differentiation between merely a ephemeral period of inefficiency and prolonged inefficiency which seems unaccountable. Example: a really superb individual who systematically fails categories or person who invariably changes occupations for no ground.

Bizarre Behavior

There are many things people do that others would happen unusual. The assorted piercings today’s younger coevals chooses to acquire and their manner of frock may look bizarre to grownups. but their motives are non difficult to understand. which keeps them from being considered clinically unnatural. Bizarre behaviour that has no rational footing. nevertheless. seems to bespeak that the person is confused. The psychoses often bring on hallucinations ( groundless centripetal perceptual experiences ) or psychotic beliefs ( beliefs which are obviously false yet held as truth by the person ) . 1

Disruptive Behavior

Disruptive behaviour agencies unprompted. seemingly unmanageable behaviour that disrupts the lives of others or deprives them of their human rights on a regular footing. This type of behaviour is characteristic of a terrible psychological upset. An illustration of this is the antisocial personality upset. All of these types of behaviour are maladaptive because they straight affect the well-being of the person and those around them. and barricade the growing and fulfilment of the individual’s potency. The topic of riotous behaviour is a huge subject and can non be done justness to here but I will indicate out a few of import facets that should be kept in head. Because human existences depend on the psychological well being of each person to work decently. a nonfunctional member ( what we may call unnatural ) is distinguished by his equals and more likely dramatis personae aside.

Every society has its ain civilization which tends to indicate out what is accepted and what is deemed unwanted. When one or member nowadayss a separate. different behaviour or thought which is non a portion of the usual manner of life for the members. certain incongruousnesss may originate. Depending on the specific behaviour or characteristic. this may do a break in the peaceable lives of those environing this person. Such behaviour would be considered unnatural.

Although we understand that what is normal for one society may be unnatural for another and frailty versa. And every society has its ain specific manner of covering with the unnatural member ; normally one is “shunned” if non labeled with a psychological upset. I. nevertheless. personally believe the more differences. positive and negative. the better the society will turn. The inquiry here is that why are working societies intolerant of differences among the members? Why should persons with different ( negative ) life picks and behaviour forms interrupt society?


Based on the research I have done sing this affair. non to advert the seeable result I witness every twenty-four hours. I eventually realized that we spend excessively much clip focused on what is expected of us and that puts on a batch of force per unit area. Believing that there is a certain manner to populate and staying by the regulations creates evidences for judgement. We place judgement on others who do non follow the norms of society and we label them as abnormal. Everyone has the right to populate the manner they see fit and every bit long as no 1 crosses the line and creates chaos for those around them. we can all map usually aboard each other.

There is no definite manner to make up one’s mind what is normal and what is unnatural ; I excessively believe it?s all about how we function in society. A well-oiled society. in which the bulk of the people act and react. consequently. will bloom whether or non people understand the constructs of normalcy and abnormalcy. However. because we are a species of group endurance. we can non undervalue the power we have on one and other. We make up society and a society that is misfunctioning due to its members holding a negative consequence on each other is a society that will discontinue to turn in a positive mode. Chaos is normally the result of an highly ailing working society.


1. Kring. Neale. Davison & A ; Johnson ; Abnormal Psychology. 2007

Psychology 101:

2. Hardy. C. & A ; Latane. B ; Social Loafing on a Cheering Task ; Social Science. 71. 165-172 ; ( 1986 ) .

3. Heider. F. ; The Psychology of Interpersonal Relationships. New York: Wiley ; ( 1958 ) .

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Understanding Normal and Abnormal Behavior Essay. (2017, Aug 16). Retrieved from http://paperap.com/paper-on-understanding-normal-and-abnormal-behavior-essay/

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