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Date of Award

2004

Document Type

Dissertation - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)

Department

Counseling Psychology

First Advisor

Linda Webster

First Committee Member

Rachelle Hackett

Second Committee Member

Dennis Brennan

Third Committee Member

Nancy Brison-Moll

Abstract

A child's internalized regulatory system and development of defenses is patterned after the parent-child attachment system. Therefore, measuring defenses can provide information about the quality of the internalized attachment relationship. This study examined the correlation of defenses in mother-son pairs. It examined defensive behaviors utilizing the Rorschach Test, as responses to the Rorschach are useful in describing a person's basic defensive functions. The study found that the defenses of regression, repression, avoidance, a personal defense stance and the quality of inner resources were positively correlated between mothers and sons. These correlations were .74, .53, .50, .48, and .44 respectively. This data indicates that, for this sample, a mother and son's defensive behaviors were correlated across several variables. These results suggest the Rorschach may be a useful instrument in studying the sequelae of the attachment relationship. This method may also offer the family therapist insights into what defenses are currently activated in the parent-child relationship.

Pages

67

ISBN

9780496117857 , 0496117858

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