Bonds Between Mother and Daughter
Even before birth a mother and child share a special bond. This bond is like no other, for it is miracle to have a baby growing inside your body. The feelings that emerge with this miracle are too strong for words. After birth, the bond develops into a greater emotional and physical bond. The child will spend much of his or her time learning in the first years of life with the mother, who is usually the primary caregiver. Much of what the children learn from their mother will effect their whole life. Through the processes of social learning and modeling the child will learn his or her values, social roles, social identity and gender identity from their mother. Gender identity development is related to the emotional relationships that develop between children and their mothers (Chodorow).
On global rating scales mothers indicated higher levels of warmth toward their infants if the infant was a girl (Sear, Maccoby, Levin). If this is truly the case, mothers are nurturing closer relationships and a greater sense of continuity with their daughters than with sons. Research by Benenson, Morash, and Petrakos (1998) provides evidence that girls are more emotionally involved with their mothers than boys. Over time, women maintain their connectedness with their mothers, whereas men's maternal attachment decreases. (Calloni and Handal). Boy and Girls form different emotional relationships with their primary caregiver based on their gender ( Chodorow).
Surry (1985) found that the self is organized and developed within the contest of significant relationships. For women, these significant relationships seem to be with their mothers. Perhaps this is caused by the social role of women and men. Males and
females act differently to the opposite sex because of the roles they are bound to by
society. The stereotypes that are associated with maleness and femaleness in one's culture is learned...
References: Smith, T.E. (1983). Parental influence: A review of the evidence of influence and
theoretical model of the parental influence process. In A.C. Kerckhoff(Ed.), Research in socialization (Vol. 4, pp. 13-45). Greenwich, CT: JAI.
Surry, J.L. (1985). Self-in-relation: A theory of women 's development. Work in progress, Stone Center for Developmental Services and Studies, Wellesley College.
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