Cover image for Altered loves : mothers and daughters during adolescence
Altered loves : mothers and daughters during adolescence
Apter, T. E.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : St. Martin's Press, 1990.
Physical Description:
vi, 231 pages ; 22 cm
Format :


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HQ798 .A735 1990 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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Are mothers jealous of their developing daughters? Is an early mother-child bond severed during adolescence and never formed again? What does adolescence feel like to a girl? Drawing on detailed interviews with mothers and daughters from Terri Apter's research in Great Britain and America, and from recent psychological studies of family interaction, Altered Loves is a frank, moving, and insightful examination of this crucial time in a woman's life. Apter shows that contrary to the classical view of adolescence as a stage in which daughters reject their mothers, adolescent daughters often remain strongly attached to them. The strife that characterizes this period is actually the result of trying to renegotiate a valued relationship. Beautifully written, Altered Loves explodes conventional myths and theories about mother-daughter relationships and offers new and valuable insights that will help mothers remember and daughters understand the delicate, painful, and complex process of becoming a woman.

Author Notes

Terri Apter is a social psychologist and researcher at Cambridge University in England.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. vii
Introductionp. 1
Notesp. 23
Chapter 1 The Beauty and the Beastlinessp. 24
What Is Adolescence?p. 24
Adolescence and Pubertyp. 26
Self-Consciousness and Self-Distortionp. 40
Maternal Amnesiap. 53
Notesp. 56
Chapter 2 The Myth of Separationp. 57
The Traditional View of Adolescencep. 60
The Feminist Revisionp. 64
The History of Storm and Stressp. 69
What Does the Adolescent Want?p. 73
My Mother, My Fatherp. 80
The Battle for Recognitionp. 90
Unhappy Confidencep. 101
Notesp. 107
Chapter 3 Validation Versus Interference: the Choreography of Identityp. 109
What Does an Adolescent Need to Develop an Identity?p. 112
Who Helps Her Grow?p. 114
She Must Love Me for Myselfp. 123
Identity Through the Parentp. 129
The Mother's Needsp. 132
New Levels of Painp. 136
Notesp. 147
Chapter 4 Sex, Envy and Successp. 149
The New Popularity of Unacceptable Feelingsp. 151
Sexual Messagesp. 160
Poison Apples: The Fairy Tale of the Mother's Envyp. 164
Self-Realisation and Self-Sabotagep. 169
Independence and Intimacyp. 175
Fighting Timesp. 182
Notesp. 189
Chapter 5 Mothers on a See-Saw: Friends and Peersp. 191
Friendly Mirrorsp. 193
Discipline and Regulation of Friendshipp. 196
The Course of Friendship Through Adolescencep. 200
Illusion Strategy in Friendshipp. 208
Siblings as Friendsp. 214
Special Friendship Problems in Late Adolescencep. 222
Diariesp. 227
Notesp. 230
Chapter 6 Risk, Discipline and Growthp. 231
Risk Confrontationp. 243
Divorcep. 248
Parental Humiliationp. 253
The Loss of a Motherp. 259
The Life-Long Dialoguep. 262
Notesp. 266
Bibliographyp. 267