chapter  16
7 Pages

Sexual complexes

As is well known, classical psychoanalysis since Freud attributes fundamental significance to infantile sexuality for the successful or unsuccessful outcome of personal maturation or development. In contrast, Jung, as mentioned earlier, attributes to the infant a polyvalent predisposition; he could not accept sexual drives as the primary “motor” of our whole psychic life from early infancy onward. The observation of infant research-that there are five distinct, innate motivational systems which take part from early on in the development of the sense of self and later in the sense of personal identity-comes somewhat closer to the Jungian thesis. Sexuality, together with sensuality, is attributed to one of the five motivational systems (Lichtenberg, 1989a). Lichtenberg believes that it is important to differentiate sensual needs from more properly sexual needs. According to his observation, the sensual joy or pleasure of the newborn is released from an innate program and is normally a part of day-to-day occurrences, as reflected in the infant’s ongoing dialogue with the mother or other primary caregiver. But sexual excitement, although it follows the same innate pattern, begins to operate later as a part of the regular, daily experience of the infant from the age of about 18 months.