a theory wherein a stimulant or occurrence excites a primary affective state, that might be enjoyable or not enjoyable and an opponent affective state, that functions to lessen the magnitude of the primary state, both at the same time. These two cases combined make up emotional experience. In accordance with this theory, the opponent condition has an extensive latency, a sluggish course of acceleration, and a sluggish course of decomposition following the originating stimulant's elimination. All of this leads to its domination for a time subsequent to elimination of the stimulant.

OPPONENT PROCESS THEORY OF ACQUIRED MOTIVATION: "In accordance with opponent process theory of acquired motivation, individuals deprived of attachment and affection as a child may grow into adults who are not capable of expressing affection or building attachments of their own and also have no desire to."
Cite this page: N., Pam M.S., "OPPONENT PROCESS THEORY OF ACQUIRED MOTIVATION," in PsychologyDictionary.org, April 7, 2013, https://psychologydictionary.org/opponent-process-theory-of-acquired-motivation/ (accessed October 20, 2021).