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Cheyenne DeShieldsDeShields’ long-term goal is to work in a mental health clinic for adolescents.


Mother-Daughter Relationships In Adulthood: Attachment, Self Esteem, and Illusory Superiority

Vanencia Jaquia Lynch
Mentor: Dr. Elizabeth Yost Hammer

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Nature as well as nurture can influence the emotional and cognitive growth of a person. Nurture includes the level of emotion being shown toward an individual, which is then reciprocated. One way that nurture is often measured is through attachment levels. Research suggests that different forms of attachment often contribute to the lifestyle and morals of adults. In the present study, attachment levels between mothers and daughters were examined, in relation to self-esteem and illusory superiority. With a basic knowledge of mother-daughter attachment and self-esteem one could safely assume that the two are positively related. No research to date has examined illusory superiority with the aforementioned variables. Therefore, I hypothesize that mother-daughter attachment, self-esteem, and illusory superiority are positively related. In this study, adult women who reported a strong attachment to their mother did not have a higher self-esteem, which differed from what was hypothesized. However, the findings suggest that adult women that reported a strong attachment to their mother had higher levels of illusory superiority. Also findings show that women that reported higher levels of illusory superiority had lower levels of self-esteem. The relationship between a mother and a daughter could be related to how a daughter views herself in relation to others.

Key Terms

Attachment, Self-esteem, Illusory Superiority

About the Author

Vanencia Jaquia Lynch is a Psychology major with a minor in Business Administration from Houston, TX. Upon graduating Xavier next Fall, Lynch plans to get her masters in clinical psychology and then continue on to obtain her Psy.D., specializing in child and adolescents. Read more ...

About the Faculty Mentor

Dr. Elizabeth Yost Hammer, Professor of Psychology and Director of the Center for the Advancement of Teaching, has a research background in social psychology and the scholarship of teaching and learning.

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