Interpersonal Rejection and Human Needs
Interpersonal Rejection and Human Needs
Precisely, a human being becomes a personality due to the fact that he or she lives in society and develops capabilities that are inherent in his or her biological nature in interaction with other people. These opportunities cannot be realized outside of society, thus, a human cannot become a full-fledged personality. The process of human adoption of social experience, acquisition of the qualities that allow him or her to be a member of society, is called socialization. Socialization of the individual is one of the most important factors of human existence, as it is directly linked to all human needs. Violation of socialization process may be caused by the social rejection of an individual, which will lead to disastrous consequences in the development and functioning. Social rejection occurs at the interpersonal level and leads to "blockage or elimination of certain human needs" (Marcus & Davis, 1994, p. 251). This can lead to degradation of an individual or, in some cases, to death.
Basically, society does not consist of the isolated individuals but expresses the sum of connections and relationships in which these individuals exist. The basis of these relations is human interaction. According to Leary (2001), interaction is the process of direct or indirect influence of objects (subjects) on each other, generating their mutual conditionality and communication (p. 64). This causation is the main feature of interaction, as each of the "cooperating parties serves as the cause and consequence of the simultaneous inverse effect of the opposite side", which determines the development of facilities and structures (Stafford, 2007, p. 367). If there is a contradiction in this interaction, it becomes a source of self-propulsion and self-development of phenomena and processes. Therefore, interaction in social psychology implies not only peoples' influence on each other, but also a direct organization of their joint activities, which enables a group to implement common activities for its members. In this case, the very same interaction acts as a systematic, continuous implementation of actions designed to cause a corresponding reaction from other people. According to Leary (2001), there are "interpersonal and intergroup interactions" (p. 47). Interpersonal interaction is accidental or intentional, private or public, long or short, verbal or non-verbal communication and connection between two or more people that cause mutual changes in their behaviors, activities, and purposes (Leary, 2001, p. 52). A presence of external goal in relation to the interaction of the individual requires joint efforts. Stafford (2007) states that a situational analysis is a quite strict regulation of activity of specific conditions, rules, regulations, and intense relationship, whereby "an interaction becomes a sufficiently changeable phenomenon" (p. 369). Reflective ambiguity is a perception dependence on modalities of implementation and evaluation of its participants.
The Structure of Interpersonal Relationships. The proposed structure of relationships generates the important consequences. For each participant of interpersonal relations, these relations become the only reality of any kind of relationships. Nevertheless, the actual content of interpersonal relations of the final analysis is represented as a particular type of social relations, i.e., "certain social activities, their content, and essence remain largely hidden" (Stafford, 200, p. 363). Despite the fact that in the process of interpersonal, and, therefore, public relations people exchange thoughts and are conscious of their relationship, this realization often does not go beyond the knowledge that people have entered into interpersonal relationships. Several moments of social relations are presented by their participants only as their interpersonal relationships: someone is perceived as an "evil teacher" or as "a cunning trader", etc (Stafford, 200, p. 364). However, the current situation is different at the level of everyday consciousness without specific theoretical analysis.
Therefore, motives of conduct are often explained by a perfunctory picture of relations and not as actual objective relations behind this picture. Moreover, the situation is complicated by the fact that "interpersonal relationships are the actual reality of social relations": there are no "straight" public relations beyond them (Zimmer-Gembeck & Nesdale, 2013, p. 31). Thus, participants of all group activities act in two capacities: as a performer of an impersonal social role and as a unique human being. This gives grounds to introduce a concept of "interpersonal role", i.e. strengthening of human condition not in the system of social relations but in a system of group relations, not on the basis of its objective place in this system but on the basis of individual psychological characteristics of personality (Zimmer-Gembeck & Nesdale, 2013, p. 33). Examples of such interpersonal roles are well known in everyday life: people from a group say about that someone is a "straightforward person", "one of us", "scapegoat", etc (Stafford, 200, p. 365). A detection of personality traits in a social role's performance style causes in other members of a group responses, and thus, there is a whole system of interpersonal relations. The nature of interpersonal relations is significantly different from the nature of social relations: their important specific feature is emotional basis. Therefore, interpersonal relationships can be considered as a factor of psychological "climate" of a group (Leary, et al, 2006, p. 118). Emotional basis of interpersonal relationships means that they arise and develop on the basis of certain people's feelings in relation to each other.
According to Coplan & Bowker (2013), there exist three types or levels of emotional displays of personality: affects, emotions, and feelings. Emotional basis of interpersonal relationships includes all kinds of emotional displays. However, the third component of the scheme is usually characterized in social psychology, i.e. feelings, where the term is not used in its literal sense. Naturally, the "set" of these feelings is limitless. However, all of them can be summarized in two major groups. According to Coplan & Bowker (2013), the first type of groups is called "the conjunctive group" (p. 40). It includes all sorts of feelings that bring together and combine people. In each case, the other side of such an attitude appears as a desired object, towards which people demonstrate a willingness to cooperate, work together, etc. The second group is called "the disjunctive": here are the feelings that divide people, when the other side acts as an unacceptable or frustrating object, in relation to which there is no desire to cooperate, etc. (Coplan & Bowker, 2013, p. 41). The intensity of both sorts of feelings can be very different. Undoubtedly, a particular level of development cannot be indifferent to the groups' activities.
Compatibility and Incompatibility as the Main Components of Interpersonal Rejection. Basically, compatibility and incompatibility are one of the most important factors that determine social rejection in interpersonal relationships. Thus, progress or regress of interpersonal relationships depends on this socio-psychological phenomenon. The most common human aspirations can lead to clashes in negotiating positions. As a result, people enter into a relationship of "agreement-disagreement" with each other (Zimmer-Gembeck & Nesdale, 2013, p. 31). In case of consent, there is an involvement of partners in joint ventures. At the same time, there exists a distribution of roles and responsibilities between the participants of interaction. These relations arouse a particular focus of efforts. It is associated either with a concession or with a conquest of certain positions. Therefore, partners are required to reveal "mutual tolerance, discipline, perseverance, mental agility", and other strong-willed qualities based on intelligence and a high level of consciousness and self-consciousness (Leary, 2001, p. 58).
However, the interaction of people is accompanied or mediated by a manifestation of complex social and psychological phenomena, which are known as phenomena of "compatibility-incompatibility" (Zimmer-Gembeck & Nesdale, 2013, p. 33). As interpersonal relationships and communication are specific forms of cooperation, so compatibility and incompatibility should be considered as the components of its special features. Interpersonal relationships in a group and compatibility (physiological and psychological) of its members generate another important socio-psychological phenomenon, which is called the "psychological climate" (Leary, et al, 2006, p. 118). There are several kinds of compatibility. Psychophysiological compatibility is based on the interaction of individuals' temperaments and needs. According to Leary, et al (2006), psychological compatibility involves an "interaction of tempers, intellects, and behavioral motives" (p. 119). Socio-psychological compatibility provides for a harmonization of social roles, interests, and value orientations of participants. Finally, social and ideological compatibility is based on "community of ideological values and similarity of attitudes" with respect to the possible facts of reality, which are related to the implementation of ethnic, class, and religious interests (Leary, et al, 2006, p. 121).
However, there are no clear boundaries between these types of compatibility while the extreme levels of interoperability (for example, physiological, socio-psychological, socio-ideological climate), have obvious differences. A control by the participants is activated in a joint venture ("self-control, self-check, mutual supervision, and mutual verification"), which has an impact on the activities' performing (Killen, et al, 2013, p. 779). A level of compatibility in the process of interpersonal relationships affects individual needs of a person. If the compatibility level is high, then an individual can realize and develop his or her potential with everything needed for a healthy life. Once the compatibility level is lowered, an individual begins to experience a discomfort (psychological and physical). A person begins to be a subject of rejection when the level of compatibility is reduced in interaction with other people. This rejection creates social and psychological problems and entails negative consequences that can lead to ostracism, mental illness, or suicide. This happens mainly due to the fact that people, who are "expelled" from society, are deprived of an opportunity to fulfill themselves and meet their needs (Killen, et al, 2013, p. 784). According to Marcus & Davis (1994), over time, a person can reach a level where he or she cannot meet even the basic physiological needs (hunger, thirst). A crisis usually comes after a stage of rejection, which ends in degradation or death (p. 252).
Interpersonal Rejection and Human Needs
As mentioned above, interpersonal rejection has a detrimental effect on humans, which can lead to unpredictable negative consequences. The reason consists in loss of an individual's ability to meet his or her various needs. According to Goodman (1968), Maslow developed a whole theory that explains, "the livelihoods of people based on the needs of different nature and importance" (p. 52). For most people, the first place is occupied by their physiological or basic needs that are presented in a form of hunger, thirst, and sex. Maslow believed that needs served as "a motive to any action" and that the next need in the hierarchy could be satisfied only after completing the previous level (Alsted, 2005, p. 64). Nevertheless, there are exceptions to the rule.
Then, physiological needs are followed by needs for security (protection of anger, pain, fear, and death). There are also needs of a social nature, which are expressed in a form of love, family, friends, and socializing (Goodman, 1968, p. 52). These needs can be called one of the most important, as they are the basis for the future development of other necessities. A person should feel love and intimacy, or he or she may have problems with self-esteem and other psychological problems. In addition, lack of communication and friends may influence a need for self-assertion (self-esteem, career, and success), as it can eventually lead to a crisis (Marcus & Davis, 1994, p. 252). Because of this crisis, people are not able to go to the higher level of demands that involve self-actualization, that is, understanding, interpretation, and implementation of all of their abilities. It is clear that a lack of repletion of wants can lead to degradation of an individual.
In addition, an individual can engage in public relations by means of interpersonal relationships and communication. Killen, et al (2003) states that child's inclusion starts in certain environment, while a boundary of an adult person is usually much wider (p. 788). He or she directly gets into a variety of public relations, i.e. this process does not depend upon interpersonal relationships and communication only. Relationships are formed and flow under conditions of interaction of a large number of people. Alsted (2005) says that a selection of partners for communication and performance of any activity is a complex process and usually depends on "the overall atmosphere in groups of interacting people and on psychological characteristics of their own" (p. 66).
However, a problem of interpersonal relationships lies at the junction of general and social psychology. Informality, personal significance, emotional richness, and communications with intimate aspects of life greatly affect a development of personality. Interpersonal rejection can manifest itself in a form of discrimination, mockery, ignoring, etc. Generally, a reaction to rejection of any individual has a negative or even aggressive character, i.e. it depends on a "person's temperament and a level of intellectual development" (Leary, et al, 2006, p. 115). In most cases, it leads a person in a difficult situation and has a negative impact on his or her psyche and overall condition. According to Leary, et al (2006), the type and strength of interpersonal rejection may affect development of a variety of personal problems (p. 116). These problems are socio-psychological, as they determine a significant part of an individual's life. For example, if a person is incompatible with most of people from his/her environment, he/she may be a subject to rejection by the majority or by some individuals. This rejection can be reflected in a form of low self-esteem, which may lead to a lower level of self-realization. In addition, there is a possibility that the same rejection can cause an opposite effect and strengthen human psyche in the future.
Basically, conditions that surround a person do not only cause needs, but also create opportunities for their repletion. According to Alsted (2005), strengthening of social needs in a form of value orientations, awareness of real possibilities for their implementation, and determination of ways of their achievement indicate a "transition from a stage of motivation into a stage of an adequate reflection of needs in human consciousness" (p. 56). If one considers social acceptance in terms of the theory of Maslow's needs, it can be said that there are some main needs of belonging and acceptance in the hierarchy (Sumerlin & Bundrick, 1996, p. 259). These needs have an absolute social character, thus, not all other requirements seem attainable without their satisfaction. Furthermore, interpersonal rejection has a negative impact on physiological human needs that can lead to death or complete isolation.
Undoubtedly, the repletion of wants plays the most important role in human life. Individual's well-being and physical and psychological health depend on the implementation of capabilities. For instance, discrimination or loss of a loved one or a friend can lead to a prolonged depression and psychological problems, the consequences of which can cause "an irreparable damage" (Marcus & Davis, 1994, p. 251). Social membership depends on interpersonal relationships, which can be completely destroyed by a rejection. Everyone runs a similar stage in his or her development. Each person perceives interpersonal rejection differently. According to Sumerlin & Bundrick (1996), some people can get psychological trauma, which is able to determine their existence, while others can use this experience as a potent stimulus, and, thus, achieve a greater social and material success (p. 270). All people are different in character and temperament, so the problem of interpersonal rejection is very common in society. In addition, an individual's reaction to rejection is crucial too. Typically, this reaction has a negative nature, and the more negative it is, the more it causes a rejection. Almost all theories of human needs have a direct relationship with the structure of social interaction. Since human being is social, almost all aspects of human life are dependent on the rest of society (Leary, 2001, p. 58). A person is particularly vulnerable to interpersonal rejection at an early age, when his/her identity is not formed. Later, this problem can be solved more effectively, but it also can be transformed into a serious conflict situation, in consequence of which an individual may suffer serious psychological trauma.
Humans are social beings, and therefore, their lives depend on membership, communication, and friendship. This means that a person is dependent on assessment and acceptance of other members of society. Exchange of information and emotions plays an important role in shaping individual's personality. In addition, analyzing the structure of social interaction and interpersonal relations, one can say that these areas of life are crucial for the formation and repletion of needs. Interpersonal rejection has a strong impact on repletion of social needs, which can lead to disastrous consequences. Individual's rejection is accompanied by conflicts of different types, direction, and degree. Interpersonal rejection can be both individual and social. Rejection can be expressed in various forms, such as individual's discrimination, neglect, or even complete expulsion from society.
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