Intimacy in romantic relationships: the role of the mother-daughter relationship

Elizabeth Adinall, Lionel Nicholas

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


    The purpose of this study was to determine whether separateness in mother-daughter relationships/interactions is positively related to sexual and non-sexual intimacy in romantic relationships. It further sought to establish whether mother-daughter interactions significantly explain romantic intimacy in young women while taking into account other individual variables such as current relationship status and the onset of puberty. Respondents were 179 female students (mean age = 22.39, SD = 4.25 years) who completed the interpersonal competence questionnaire, personal assessment of intimacy questionnaire and a socio-demographic questionnaire. The results indicated that a positive relationship existed between separateness and sexual intimacy (r = .688, p <0.01) as well as separateness and non-sexual intimacy (r =.598, p 0.05). Late adolescent women who possess the ability to assert themselves and express differences between themselves and their mothers were found not to be as apprehensive as their peers with regard to romantic intimacy with a partner.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)99 - 108
    Number of pages10
    JournalAfrican Journal for Physical, Health Education, Recreation and Dance
    Issue numberSupplement 1
    Publication statusPublished - 2013

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