[Interdependencies between the ideal self-image and the ideal image of parents in women with anorexia nervosa]

Maria Chuchra, Beata P Pawłowska
Psychiatria Polska 2005, 39 (4): 785-95

AIM: The aim of this work was to answer the following question: in the perception of patients, what kind of dependencies occur between ideal images of women with anorexia and ideal images of their mothers and fathers. TEST GROUP AND METHOD: The examined group consisted of 30 patients diagnosed with anorexia nervosa, undergoing treatment at the Department of Psychiatry of the Medical University in Lublin. The average age of the examined females was 21 years. The ideal images were examined with the Gough and Heilbrun Adjective Check List (ACL), which was completed by the patients three times following the instruction: "I would like to be", "I would like my mother to be", "I would like my father to be".

RESULTS: 24 statistically significant correlations were obtained between ideal images of the patients and their mothers, whereas between the ideal images of the patients and their fathers the number of positive significant correlations was 21.

CONCLUSIONS: 1. Dependencies were found between ideal images of the patients and their mothers as regards nurturance, intraception, affiliation, exhibition, dominance, autonomy, abasement and heterosexuality, self-discipline, self-control, ambition, diligence and self-confidence. 2. Dependencies were found between ideal images of the patients and their fathers as regards achievement, dominance, intraception, nurturance, affiliation, autonomy, aggression, exhibition and heterosexuality, self-control, ambition, resoluteness, self-confidence as well as such characteristics as: protectiveness, spontaneity and responsibility. 3. The following dependencies occur between ideal images of mothers and ideal images of fathers as perceived by women with anorexia: need for dominance, exhibition, heterosexuality and nurturance, deference and ambition.

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