Ambivalence - This is a contradictory relationship to the subject or ambivalent experience caused by an individual or an object. In other words, an object can provoke in a person the simultaneous occurrence of two antagonistic feelings. This concept was previously introduced by E. Bleuler, who considered human ambivalence to be a key sign of schizophrenia, as a result of which he identified three of its forms: intellectual, emotional, and volitional.

Emotional ambivalence is revealed in the simultaneous sensation of positive and negative emotions to another individual, object or event. Child-parent relationships can serve as an example of the manifestation of ambivalence.

The willful ambivalence of a person is found in the endless rushing between the polar solutions, in the impossibility of making a choice between them. Often this leads to the suspension from the commission of an action to make a decision.

The intellectual ambivalence of a person consists in alternating antagonistic, contradictory or mutually exclusive opinions in the thoughts of the individual.

The contemporary of E. Bleuler, Z. Freud, put a completely different meaning into the term human ambivalence. He regarded it as the simultaneous coexistence of two primarily peculiar to the person opposing deep-seated incentive motives, of which the most fundamental are orientation towards life and the craving for death.

Ambivalence of feelings

Often you can meet couples in which jealousy prevails, where crazy love intertwines with hatred. This is a manifestation of ambivalence feelings. Ambivalence is in psychology a controversial inner emotional experience or state that has a connection with a twofold relation to a subject or object, object, event, and is characterized simultaneously by its acceptance and rejection of it, rejection.

The term ambivalence of feelings or emotional ambivalence was proposed by E. Bleuer to a Swiss psychiatrist with the aim of denoting the characteristic of individuals with schizophrenia, ambivalence and attitude, quickly replacing each other. This concept soon became more widespread in psychological science. Complex dual feelings or emotions that originate in the subject due to the diversity of his needs and the versatility of the phenomena that directly surround him, simultaneously attracting to him and scaring, causing positive and negative sensations, have become called ambivalent.

In accordance with the understanding of Z. Freud, the ambivalence of emotions to certain limits is the norm. At the same time, a high degree of its manifestation indicates a neurotic state.
Ambivalence is inherent in certain ideas, concepts that simultaneously express sympathy and antipathy, pleasure and displeasure, love and hate. Often one of these feelings can be unconsciously repressed, masking others. Today in modern psychological science there are two interpretations of this concept.

By ambivalence psychoanalytic theory is understood as a complex set of feelings that a person feels about a subject, another subject or phenomenon. Its occurrence is considered normal in relation to those individuals whose role is ambiguous in the life of a person. And the presence of exclusively positive emotions or negative feelings, that is, unipolarity, is interpreted as idealization or a manifestation of depreciation. In other words, psychoanalytic theory suggests that emotions are always ambivalent, but the subject himself does not understand this.

Psychiatry regards ambivalence as a periodic global change in the attitude of an individual to a particular phenomenon, individual or subject. In psychoanalytic theory, such a change in attitude is often called "splitting the ego."

Ambivalence in psychology is a contradictory feeling that people feel almost simultaneously, and not mixed feelings and motives that are experienced alternately.

Emotional ambivalence, according to Freud's theory, can dominate the pregenital phase of the mental formation of the crumbs. At the same time, the most characteristic is that aggressive desires and intimate motives arise simultaneously.
Bleuler was in many ways ideologically close to psychoanalysis. Therefore, it is precisely in it that the term ambivalence received the most detailed development. Freud considered ambivalence as a literal designation by Bleuler of opposing inclinations, often expressed in subjects as a feeling of love, along with hatred of one desired object. In his work on the theory of intimacy, Freud described opposing inclinations paired up in relation to personal intimate activity.

During the study of the phobia of a five-year-old child, he also noticed that the emotional being of individuals consists of opposites. The expression by a small child of one of the antagonistic experiences in relation to the parent does not prevent him from simultaneously showing the opposite experience.

Examples of ambivalence: a baby can love a parent, but at the same time wish him to die. According to Freud, if a conflict arises, it is resolved by changing the child’s object and transferring one of the internal movements to another person.

The concept of ambivalence of emotions was used by the founder of psychoanalytic theory also in the study of such a phenomenon as transference. In many of his writings, Freud emphasized the contradictory nature of the transference, which plays a positive role and at the same time has a negative direction. Freud argued that the transference is ambivalent by itself, since it embraces a friendly attitude, that is, a positive, and a hostile aspect, that is, a negative one, regarding the psychoanalyst.

The term ambivalence was subsequently widely used in psychological science.

Ambivalence of feelings is especially pronounced in the puberty period, since this time is a turning point in adulthood, due to puberty. Ambivalence and paradoxical nature of a teenager is manifested in a number of contradictions as a result of a crisis of self-knowledge, overcoming which the individual acquires an individuality (the formation of identity). Increased egocentrism, aspiration to the unknown, immaturity of moral attitudes, maximalism, ambivalence and paradoxical nature of the adolescent are features of adolescence and represent risk factors in the formation of victimized behavior.

Ambivalence in relationships

The human individual is the most complex being of an ecosystem, as a result of which harmony and lack of contradiction in relations are rather the standards to which individuals are directed, rather than the characteristic features of their inner reality. The feelings of people are often inconsistent and ambivalent. At the same time they can feel them simultaneously in relation to the same person. Psychologists call this quality ambivalence.

Examples of ambivalence in relationships: when a spouse feels at the same time a feeling of love along with hatred towards a partner due to jealousy, or boundless tenderness for one’s own child in conjunction with irritation caused by excessive fatigue, or a desire to be closer to parents in conjunction with dreams that they should stop climb into the life of a daughter or son.

The duality of relationships can equally both interfere with the subject and help. When it arises as a contradiction, on the one hand, between stable feelings towards a living being, work, phenomenon, subject and, on the other hand, short-term emotions provoked by them, such a duality is considered to be a corresponding norm.

Such a temporal antagonism in relationships often arises in a communicative interaction with a close environment with which individuals associate stable relationships with a plus sign and to which they experience a feeling of love and affection. However, due to various reasons, sometimes close surroundings can provoke irritability in individuals, a desire to avoid communication with them, and often even hatred.

Ambivalence in relationships is in other words a state of mind, in which every set is balanced by its opposite. Antagonism of feelings and attitudes as a psychological concept must be distinguished from the presence of mixed sensations in relation to an object or feelings regarding an individual. Based on a realistic assessment of the imperfections of the nature of an object, phenomenon, or subject, mixed feelings arise, while ambivalence is a setting of a deep emotional character. In such a setup, antagonistic relationships follow from a universal source and are interrelated.

K. Jung used ambivalence for the purpose of characterization:

- connection of positive emotions and negative feelings regarding an object, object, event, idea or another individual (these feelings come from one source and do not constitute a mixture of properties characteristic of the subject to which they are directed);

- interest in the multiplicity, fragmentation and impermanence of the psychic (in this sense, ambivalence is only one of the states of the individual);

- self-negation of any position describing this concept;

- attitudes, in particular, to the images of parents and, in general, to archetypical imagery;

- universality, since duality is present everywhere.

Jung argued that life itself is an example of ambivalence, because it coexists in many mutually exclusive concepts - good and evil, success always borders on defeat, hope is accompanied by despair. All listed categories are designed to balance each other.

Ambivalence of behavior is found in the manifestation of two polar opposing motivations alternately. For example, in many species of living creatures, the reactions of attack are replaced by flight and fear.

Pronounced ambivalence of behavior can also be observed in the reactions of people to unfamiliar individuals. The stranger provokes the emergence of mixed emotions: a feeling of fear along with curiosity, a desire to avoid interacting with him simultaneously with the desire to establish contact.

It is a mistake to suppose that the opposite feelings have a neutralizing, intensifying or weakening influence of each other. In forming the indivisible emotional state, antagonistic emotions, however, more or less clearly retain their own individuality in this indivisibility.

Ambivalence in typical situations is due to the fact that certain features of a complex object have different effects on the needs and value orientation of the individual. For example, an individual can be respected for hard work, but at the same time condemn him for his temper.

The ambivalence of a person in some situations is a contradiction between stable emotions in relation to the subject and situational sensations resulting from them. For example, an insult originates in cases where subjects emotionally positively evaluated by an individual show inattention to him.

Psychologists call subjects who often have ambivalent feelings about one or another event highly ambivalent, and less ambivalent are those who always seek an unequivocal opinion.

Numerous studies prove that in certain situations high ambivalence is needed, but in others it will only interfere.