PSY 246 CCU Late Adulthood Faith and Integrity Discussion

A major challenge of late adulthood can be the loss of physical health or a previous lifestyle (for instance, many older adults come to a point where they are no longer able to drive or live independently). In addition, many may lose friends or a spouse during the older adult years. These changes present Christians with an opportunity to consider Erikson’s developmental theory regarding “integrity versus despair” (Kail & Cavanaugh, 2019, p. 508-509) and choose joyful perseverance in the face of suffering and loss.

  • How can a Christian cope with the experience of older adulthood and live victoriously? Describe “integrity versus despair” (Kail & Cavanaugh, 2019, p. 508-509) according to Erikson. Provide examples from the text and connect this specific crisis to Scripture.
  • How can Christians view this phase in life with hope and perseverance?
  • Remember, Erikson’s concept of this phase recognizes both “integrity” (looking back on one’s life and seeing purpose and accomplishment) and “despair” (looking back and grieving what has been lost/missed) (Kail & Cavanaugh, 2019, p. 508-509). Analyze both concepts in your post, identifying the pros and cons of each and how Christians can best navigate each.

Please describe and expand on both integrity and despair as potential responses to life changes in older adulthood in your discussion post. Provide examples of each.

Arguments should be supported by specific and concrete examples. For sources, use the text along with a biblical quotation and/or reference. When referencing the textbook, use APA formatting for sources that include the author and date of publication. For example use, “Kail & Cavanaugh (2019) states. . .” Also include a reference list at the end of your post.


Kail, R. V., & Cavanaugh, J. C. (2019). Human development: A life-span view (8th ed.).

  • Chapter 11: Being with Others: Relationships in Young and Middle Adulthood (entire chapter)
  • Chapter 13: Making it in Midlife: The Biopsychosocial Challenges of Middle Adulthood (entire chapter)
  • Chapter 15: Social Aspects of Later Life: Psychosocial, Retirement, Relationship, and Societal Issues (entire chapter)


Video: Learning to Recognize Depression in Older Adults (2:39)

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