Depression is one of the most prevalent psychological disorders. Depression can be caused by several factors, including interpersonal relationships. Interpersonal relationships are the relationship between individuals and the reactions and emotions of each individual expressed directly and discreetly to each other. Common interpersonal relationships include (a) within the family, such as between the parents and between parents and children; (b) the social environment where differences in ethnicity and social class come into play; and (c) interactions between genders across age groups for both females and males.
Many people suffer from depression at one point in their life. It is inevitable, the feeling of hopelessness, sorrow, or being alone. These are all common emotions associated with depression. For a select few, depression can be hard to overcome, and this is where depression becomes a disorder that requires active treatment. Those ‘selected few’ account for over 100 million people worldwide and result in 75% of all psychiatric hospitalizations. Yet the question remains, why did these people become depressed? How did they become depressed? One of the answers that lead to the cause of depression would be a person’s interpersonal relationship with their surroundings and the people around them. There are many interpersonal instances that can have the ability to lead to the onset of depression, such as the family environment, the socialization setting, and the discrimination against gender in certain cultures and instances.
Out of all the interpersonal cases that can contribute on the onset of a depressive disorder, the ambiance of a family has the most weight and impact on a depressed individual. In the case of spouses, the well being of one spouse will have a notable impact on the other spouse and on the welfare of their marriage. For example, in 30% of all marriage problems, there is one spouse that can be described as clinically depressed. The reason why a spouse might have a unipolar mood disorder could be due to their relationship being characterized by friction, hostility, and a lack of affection. Marital distress can also be caused by the impact of having a child. When a woman is pregnant, she can experience a whole range of emotions due to the changing of interpersonal relationship with husband and the building of a new relationship with the unborn child. For example, the building of a new interpersonal relationship with the child can be very tasking and become a major stressful life event that can cause a mood disorder to develop.
Aside from the martial distresses of spouses, the impact of depressed parents can have an effect on their children as well. The depressed children of depressed mothers have more negative interpersonal behavior as compared with depressed children of non-depressed mothers. The parents of depressed children are less warm and caring and more hostile than parents of non-depressed children. Because of this negative interpersonal relation between kids and their parents, children can develop a negative view of their family. This negative view can lead to the feeling of lack of control and having a high risk of conflict, rejection, and low self-esteem.
Any changes in a family environment due to parental depression increase the risk of developing a mood disorder in children. The result of this can be found as early as preschoolers and infants, due to the insecure attachment they develop with their parents. The emotional distress of children can also have an effect on their parents, causing depression that in turn will also affect the children, theoretically creating a never-ending cycle unless they seek treatment. Sometimes, it is not the depressed parents that lead to the onset of depression in their children, but rather it is the change in the family environment that stems from the parents’ depression that causes the children to become depressed. The marital troubles are a better predicator for the onset of depression than the depression of the parents or the children themselves.
Experiencing depression while as a child or an adolescent can also lead to reoccurring slips as an adult. Depressed persons often perform poorly in marriage and relationship with family members and they also might respond negatively to others, which have the ability to create stressful life events, which as a result might drive the person further into depression. Depressed people are dependant on other people and constantly seek reassurance in such a way that drives people away. Many people believe that children and parents suffer differently from depression, but not so. Depressed children can be like depressed parents, expressing sadness, anger, shame, and self-directed hostility. Just like adults, depressed children tend to blame themselves for bad events and accredit the environment for good events. They do not give themselves credit when due. This is why oftentimes, children will feel guilty if their parents get divorced and they believe that they were at fault but realistically, it was the parents’ marital distress that was the cause of the divorce, not the children’s depressive mood disorder.
As in the family environment, socialization is vital to maintaining healthy relationship and feeling well deserved and part of someone’s life. Depression can have an adverse effect on the social capacity of depressed persons, affecting their social functioning and ability to react and deal with stressful situations. It is found that people with the symptoms of depression are found to test low in social activities, close relationships, quality close relationships, family actives, and network contact, yet they test high in family arguments. One major part in the development of mood disorders in a social setting would be how well one could deal with stressful events. Normally, this is called coping strategies and it allows a person to manage their troubles and not be overwhelmed. Oftentimes, people can become depressed when unable to deal with ‘drama’ from their friends-especially in children. Depressed children reported significantly higher level of hopelessness, lower general self-esteem, and lower coping skills than non-depressed children. Their ability to be unable to cope with stress can lead to fewer and less adaptive coping techniques.
Social settings can also include one-on-one interactions and the rejection that occurs. The affected people will have such an influence on other people. This influence could be described as responding negatively to their constant searching of reassurance and rejecting them, which in turn will confirm the affected person’s belief that he or she is unworthy as a person.
A depressed individual can impact their social settings by exhibiting a lack of self-esteem, becoming more sensitive to the opinions of others, and more importantly and interestingly, become less physically active. This means that they will not want to go out, that they do not want to exert themselves. A prime example of this would be an athletic in school that becomes depressed. He does not want to participate in athletic activities because he is depressed, but his coach forces him to. As a result, he performs poorly, and his teammates heckle him for his poor performance. As an affected person, the athletic becomes overly sensitive to his teammates’ heckling and his self-esteem plummets and he drops out of sports and begins to withdraw and fight with everybody he knows.
The social class can also have a subtle effect on depression. The females with children in the working class are more prone to depression than females with children in the middle class. This can be attributed to the working class mother having to leave home to work, having to leave her child alone. This interpersonal relation can cause excessive worry and guilt that the women is not being a good mother as compared to the middle class mom, who can afford to stay at home and take care of the children and her family.
The Asian Americans are more depressed in a social and academic setting because they face more pressure than their white American peers due to the fact that they are part of a visible minority that has different culture values than others. This interpersonal relationship between the two cultures can be defined as competitive and stressful due to the fact that in America, white people have it made while as other ethnic groups have to work twice as hard to get their foot in the door. This extreme indicator of stress can lead to the dejection of many ethnic groups because they might have failed at succeeding in a competitive environment.
There are a lot of interpersonal relations when it comes to gender, such as the discrimination against gender in an academic setting. This is very prominent in females, where girls can face increased expectations to conform to the standards set forth by society, to pursue feminine type activities and occupations. It appears that parents tend to have lower expectations for girls when it comes to school. As a result of that lowered expectations, parents tend to not push their daughters toward a high-profile job, instead attempting to make their daughter conform to the stereotype of society, like become a teacher or a nurse. In fact, in 1986-1987, women only garnered 15% of the bachelor’s degrees awarded in engineering as compared to 76% and 84% for education and nursing, respectively.
Breaking the social norm can also lead to depression. The more intelligent a girl is, the more likely she is to become depressed. This positive correlation could be attributed to the more intelligent girls being able to out-perform the boys yet get punished for doing so. Being depressed as a female adolescent can have consequences in the long run in terms of social functioning, career, and enjoyment of life. Theoretically, if one were to be depressed in high school, then their grades would suffer. If their grades were to suffer, then their chances of entering a good college will dwindle. If they cannot enter a top-notch college, then they might not be able to get the career they want, and with that they would not be able to enjoy their job and feel like they have missed out on life.
The different experiences of each gender can be the cause of a mood disorder. The experience can vary by the age of the children, adolescences, or adults. For example, after the age of 15, females are twice as likely to become depressed as compared with men. This rise of depressive disorders in females during the mid-to-late adolescence years is attributed to the more concerns a girl has as compared to boys. These concerns and worries can range from their achievements or lack of, body dissatisfaction, sexual abuse, and low self-esteem. This is reinforced by the prevalence of depression in girls increased to twice the prevalence of boys, but will taper off during 18-21 years of age for both genders.
Do not be mistaken that females are the only gender that can become depressed. A good number of males develop unipolar mood disorder. In the average lifetime, 49% of all males will experience a depressive episode as compared with 63% of all females. Males will become sad and dejected for different reasons, such as intimate relationships. When an intimate relationship ends, males are more likely to become depressed at the loss than females. This could be attributed to the male’s primal desire to have a mate so he will be able to continue his family name.
Depression has been around for a long time, spanning over thousands of years, dating back to the time of Saul, yet depression is a disorder that is hard to understand. Even with all the studies conducted, there is still not much to regarding the causes of depression. There are so many ways one would be able to become depressed, but the most common and most prevalent way thus far would be the interpersonal relationships of a person and their family, social lives, and the relationship between their gender and the discrimination they suffer at the hands of others. Perhaps a better understanding of those relationships can open up new avenues where new options for treatment can be conceived and new ways of interacting to people to create a equality amongst people where they will not feel depressed.
Being beautiful has its rewards and these usually continue throughout adulthood. The secret of beauty and attractiveness is a quest of humans for as long as we became civilized. Many of us spend up to one-third of our income on looking good. Besides being popular, beautiful people get special attention from teachers, the legal system and employers. Good-looking people tend to make more money than their plain-Jane counterparts. A plainness penalty, punishing below-average-looks earn 9 percent less an hour.
We instinctively know what appeals to our own sense of beauty — we know it when we see it — defining what determines attractiveness is not easy. In frustration, we often give up and claim that beauty is in they eye of the beholder. Attractiveness is hard wired in our brains. Babies as young as 3 months identify and prefer faces that most adults would deem beautiful. Europeans can pick out the same beautiful Japanese faces as Japanese subjects. Japanese can agree on which European faces another Europeans will view as beautiful. Humans can even agree on the attractiveness of monkey faces, thus ruling out most unique racial, cultural and even species influences.
Facial recognition is a complex process. Computer facial recognition programs have been developed to analyze the subtle variations of things like the space between our eyes, the size of our noses and the proportions of our facial features. There are certain mathematical facial proportions that identify beautiful people. There is more to beauty than the mere arrangement of eyes, noses and chins. Our brains do much more than simply recognize a beautiful face. We can assess emotions, personality traits and fertility — as well as beauty — almost instantaneously. The human brain has special part called the fusiform, located in the back of the head near the spine. It is the same neural pathway needed to recognize faces of family, friends and people we have met. When it is damaged, the patients cannot recognize anyone, even people they have just met. They cannot discriminate between photographs of plain and beautiful faces.
When we recognize a face as "beautiful" we are actually making a judgement about the health and vitality of that individual. We interpret facial symmetry, that is to say, the similarity of left and right halves of a face and the smoothness of the skin to mean that a person has good genes and is free from diseases. This is part of what we mean by beautiful. Facial symmetry is one of the best observational indicators of good genes and healthy development and that these traits are what we mean when we say someone is attractive.
Facial asymmetry increases with the presence of genetic disturbances such as deleterious recessives and with homozygosity. Facial asymmetry increases with the exposure to environmental perturbations during development. Facial asymmetry is the inability of an individual to resist the disruptions in developmental symmetry. This implies a genetic weakness and less than optimum health. Bilateral symmetry is equated with heterozygosity and resistance to infection and debilitating pathogens. Bilateral symmetry and parasite resistance are factors that show optimum health and increase the success in intersexual and intrasexual competition.
The term homozygosity refers to the similarity of genetic characteristics that can cause a weakening of a species — such as occurs with in-breeding. Heterozygosity, on the other hand, is the result of genetic variety which is able to change and adapt to environmental conditions. The latter is believed to be more beneficial to a species.
Attractiveness from a female’s perspective is related to fertility of women, which causes hormonal changes in the brain that seek out strong testosterone traits in their potential mates. These traits are usually associated with aggressive behavior, risk taking and virility traits that are advantageous in the act of procreation. When women are assessing a man’s face for a marriage partner, they usually react to a man with a wide smile, small eyes, a big nose and a large jaw. This is thought to indicate a strong testosterone level, a potentially good provider and protector for family life. Younger women rely more on the physical attractiveness of a man than do older women. The latter incorporate such things as wealth, stability, power and faithfulness in their definition of attractive.
Attractiveness from a male’s perspective for ideal face of an attractive woman, prefer younger proportions because these child-like faces stimulate emotions of caring and protection. These emotions seem to be more significant than sexual urges and procreation in men. This can be in the psychological realm that dangerously approaches pathology and the law. Yet this "lolita" proclivity is hard wired.
When it comes to body proportions, most men usually like big breasts and hips; again linked to the ability to bare and nurture offspring. Estrogen, the hormone associated with female fertility, encourages fat deposits around the buttocks and thighs. Full buttocks and a narrow waist send out the same message as the ideal face. The woman is full of estrogen and very fertile. Dr Michael Cunningham of Elmhurst College, Illinois found that if a male is judging a female in an interview for a job, a woman with expressive eyebrows and dilated pupils has the edge and is likely to be considered more competent. The same features would not be judged as attractive if the same man was looking for a mate. Cunningham also found that attractive women with mature features, such as small eyes and a large nose, received more respect from men.
A face with average proportions always looks more beautiful than a unique, individual face. Average features make the faces more attractive than any specific face. The average face is easy for the brain to recognize and require less analysis and processing in the fusiform. This ease of recognition is perceived as attractiveness. But this idea is recently disproved by Dr David Perrett, of the University of St Andrews, who found that individual faces were judged more attractive than the composites. This would account for the popularity of actresses such as Brigitte Nielsen and Daryl Hannah, who have features that are far from average.
Psychologist David Perrett found that young men and women prefer faces that most resemble their mothers and fathers. Members of a close family also often share the interpretation of certain facial characteristics in judging someone’s personality. Although this does not relate directly with beauty or attractiveness, it demonstrates that some aspects of evaluating facial characteristics is learned.
My own take on this is that it is a matter of nature versus nurture. Various centers of our hard wired brain, like the fusiform, compete to control our daily decisions. One center is concerned with mate selection based on physical traits. Others brain regions respond to a potential mate who is also intelligent, honest, faithful, kind and sane. Attractiveness, in the end, actually is unique to each individual. It should be said that, "beauty is in the eyes (plural) of the beholder." It is more a matter of left and right brain politics and both hemispheres must work together to attract us to the perfect mate, as they usually do.
According to Science Daily, men with large jaws, flaring cheeks and large eyebrows are sexy, at least in the eyes of our ancestors. Facial attractiveness plays a major role in shaping human evolution. Our choice of sexual partner has shaped the human face. The face holds the secret to determining the sex of our ancestors and what makes us attractive to the opposite sex for reproduction.
According to paleontologists at the Natural History Museum, men evolved short faces between the brow and upper lip, which exaggerates the size of their jaw, the flare of their cheeks and their eyebrows. The shorter and broader male face has also evolved alongside and the canine teeth have shrunk, so men look less threatening to competitors, yet attractive to mates.
At puberty, the region between the mouth and eyebrows, known as upper facial height, develops differently in men and women. Unlike other facial features, however, this difference cannot be explained simply in terms of men being bigger than women. In spite of their larger size, men have an upper face similar in height to a female face, but much broader. These differences can be found throughout human history. As a result, a simple ratio of measures could be used to calculate facial attractiveness in a biological and mathematical way. In fact, scientists recently invented a computer program that can recognize attractiveness.
Dr Eleanor Weston, paleontologist at the Natural History Museum is of the opinion that the evolution of facial appearance is central to understanding what makes men and women attractive to each other. It is discovered that the distance between the lip and brow is immensely important to what made homosapiens attractive in the past, as it does now.