Oedipus Complex In Adults: Symptoms, Solution And Consequences

Oedipal Complex, also known as Oedipus complex is a term used in psychology which was introduced by Sigmund Freud in his theory Psychosexual stages of development, in the book Interpretations of Dream. It describes the feeling of sexual involvement of a child towards the opposite sex parent and a feeling of jealousy or rivalry towards the parent of the same sex.

Oedipus Complex In Adults

For instance, a boy feels that he is in competition with his father for the possession of her mother. Similarly, when a girl has feelings of desire towards her father ad she thinks that she is competing with her mother for Father’s affection. The Oedipus complex arises in the childhood i.e. at the age of 3 to 5 years.

But over time, this complex is ended when the child is identified with the parent of same-sex and repressed his sexual instincts. However, this complex can last up to the age of 30 years. In this article, we will explore the symptoms, causes and the recommendation to overcome this complex, so read the article till the end.

Many children also faced Childhood Abuse Trauma due to which interpersonal relationships are badly affected. So to control the Oedipal Complex problem, you need to deal with your child in a proper way.

What Is Oedipal Complex?

  • The complex, Oedipus was named by the Freud, after the character Oedipus Rex in Sophocles. He was possessed about her mother and thought of his father as his rival. He accidentally killed his father and then married her mother. This possession towards the parent of the opposite sex and feeling of competition with the parent of the same sex is known as the Oedipus complex.

Oedipus Complex In Adults

  • According to psychoanalytic theory, the Oedipus complex refers to the child’s desire for sexual involvement with the opposite sex parent, which is kept out of conscious awareness through repression.  Freud believed that it still influence the behavior of a child and plays a role in development. According to Freud, the boy wishes to possess his mother and to replace his father, who the child thinks as a rival for the mother’s affections.
  • This complex occurs in the phallic stage of psychosexual development between the ages of three and five years. During this stage of development, the Freud suggested that the child develops a sexual attraction and hostility towards parents accordingly.
  • Few behavioral manifestations of the complex might contain a boy expressing possessiveness of his mother and telling his father not to hug or kiss his mom. Little girls at this age may express their possessiveness of her father by declaring that they plan to marry their fathers when they grow up.

You can also visit the RSM Psychology Center as their staff specializes in comprehensive psychological and neuropsychological services for school-age children through older adults.

Symptoms Of The Oedipal Complex In Adults

As we have described earlier, this complex is repressed with the age but if the adult man fails to overcome this normal stage of development and becomes stuck in it, a series of characteristic behavioral and psychological symptoms emerge that identify them.

Stop being childish

You have to remove Borderline Personality Disorder from your child. Some of the symptoms of the Oedipus complex in adults are:

  • Exaggerated closeness:  He sees or talks on the phone every day. He admires her in an exaggerated way and put her as a priority before the wife or girlfriend. A similar situation can be with the girl towards her father.
  • Rivalry with the opposite sex parent: It is a coping situation where they try to put away the opposite sex parent. They may talk rudely or tell them to stay away from their mother/father.
  • Sexual impotence: They can experience sexual impotence because the unconscious sexual desires of the mother/father are repressed each time they experience sexual arousal.
  • Failure in relationships: They are more likely to have partner relationships destined to fail. They usually change partners constantly since they cannot feel full. Also, they show a great inability to form stable relationships. They may feel fear of relating intimately with another person.
  • Falling in love with elders: They try to relate romantically with people older than them.

Consequences Of Not Overcoming The Oedipus Complex

When this complex at the psychosexual stage is not resolved, a fixation at that point in development can result. According to Freud, boys who do not deal with this complex effectively become “mother-fixated” while girls become “father-fixated.” As adults, these individuals will seek out romantic partners who resemble their opposite-sex parent. It can bring a series of psychic repercussions that will prevent them from living a normal and satisfactory life. Adults also have many common psychological disorders like a mental disorder of Anxiety, Depression, etc.

 These repercussions affect in one or more areas of life and some of them can be described in this way:

  • Difficulties to mature psychologically and development of own character
  • Harder to be self-sufficient by and economically independent
  • Constant feelings of frustration due to the inability to maintain a stable relationship
  •  Having conflicts of couple
  • Difficulties to reach goals and vital objectives

Solution To Overcome Oedipal Complex

The Oedipus complex can be solved regardless of the person’s age. However, you have to be aware that if it is deeply rooted it is not always so easy, but with enough motivation and willpower, it can be achieved. Some useful tips to achieve it, are the ones we have described in detail below.

Recognize The Problem

The most important step to overcome it is that if you are suffering it, recognize that you have this problem.

Angry boy

You must recognize and become aware of what is happening and how it is affecting your daily life as this is essential to find the motivation and willpower, to eliminate it.

Release The “Privileges” Of Being a Child

Now that you are an adult you begin to do something to separate yourself from that role as a child and start making your own decisions. You can start by identifying what you really want no matter what your mother/father thinks or says and carry it out.  Stop giving priority to your mother/father over everything, especially when establishing romantic relationships.

Go To A Professional

If you notice that the problem is persistent, it is affecting you in one or more areas of your life, you feel that you cannot fight it alone or you simply would like to receive external help to overcome it, it is necessary that you go with a psychologist to give you the tools that you need to face as well as to support you in this process.

You can consult with any professional psychologist and if you are living in NewYork then you can consult with Dr. Neill Cohen Psychologist who has 25+ year of experience.

I hope you like my post about “Oedipus Complex In Adults”. If you want to read more related articles then you can also visit:


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