Words from Dic(tionary)
Adler, Alfred (1870 – 1937): Austrian psychologist and psychiatrist who disagreed with Freud’s idea that mental illness was caused by sexual conflicts in infancy, arguing that society and culture are significant factors. Adler introduced the concept of the inferiority complex.
Adler just wasn’t sexy.
You see, that’s the problem with humanity. It’s not that I’m a prude and object to sexualizing. Anything as vastly accepted, recognized and universally shared as sex is undoubtedly has across-the-board appeal.
But if you mention Sigmund Freud in front of the psychiatric community thinking that you are being wise and inventive, you might need to be prepared to be ridiculed for your lack of information. Making everything in life about sex is like insisting that pornography is a rite of passage for discovering how to interact with members of the opposite gender.
Adler had two major problems: he took away the sexiness AND he inserted the need to question ourselves on whether we felt inferior.
That last one’s a killer. That’s why people aren’t making movies about Adler, but every once in a while Freud gets stuck in because he gave us license to explore our strangeness and foibles by blaming our mother and father for a lack of warmth which caused us to become perverted.
That’s the difference. Freud gave us somebody to blame. Adler made people take personal responsibility for their own actions, their own culture, their own environment and their own feelings of insecurity.
Honestly, which one would YOU choose?
But somewhere along the line, in order for a society to grow out of being stuck in adolescence, people have to admit that they might just be their own worst problem. Yes, maybe our parents were not very good. After all the position comes with neither a manual nor any natural inclinations, contrary to popular opinion.
What we do at age thirty-five needs to cease to have anything to do with what happened to us at age four. Otherwise, we pass on the impression that everyone in the world is really sick, waiting for a diagnosis to come along and rationalize erratic behavior.
Adler may have had a whole lot more on the ball because he asked people to trace ALL the factors of their lives, and also to consider that taking a back seat to others is a personal decision rather than a permanent position.
Freud, on the other hand, made everything about erogenous zones and how we feel deprived, which caused us to act out as little children.
So we have to STOP being “children in the marketplace”–grow up, forgive the failures of our families, and start allowing ourselves to inhabit a persona which is ours alone and not at the mercy of the indiscretions of others.
Yes, if our society does not grow out of its “teenager phase, ” we will continue to throw tantrums, lie and never get our homework done.
And when the homework is not done, the national need will never be met.