In early adulthood many decisions are faced such as intimate relationships, adjustment to marriage and decisions regarding childbearing. Intimacy is a complex construct that is notoriously difficult to define and operationalize. Erikson’s (1963) psychosocial theory was one of the first and broadest theories to introduce intimacy not as a quality of a romantic couple but as a potential within the individual. As such, Erikson emphasized three elements of the capacity for intimacy: willingness to make a commitment to another person, ability to share at a deep personal level, and capacity to communicate inner thoughts and feelings. Individuals who favorably resolve the so-called “Intimacy vs. Isolation” psychosocial crisis are, then, high on these three components. Isolation, at the opposite pole of the spectrum, is characterized by an inability to commit, share deep feelings, and communicate (Weinberger & Hofstein, 2008).
Descisions on marriage can be easily be influenced by culture, friends and economy. If someone is surrounded by friends who are married more than likely they will want to become married. Culture can become an influence on marriage. For example, some cultures require individuals to be married by a certain age or if a child is being born. Economy is another reason why people become married. With the way the economy is today, love becomes second and stability comes first. If someone marries for the reasons above, they may be unhappy. Knowing elements of marriage such as love, communication, reciprocity, commitment and etc., could lead to a happy marriage.
Childbearing is also an important issue in early adulthood. Young adults make choices to delay parenting, have an abortion, have a child, wait before having another child, or stop having children together (Newman & Newman, 2012). Factors such as religious beliefs, career aspirations, ideals about