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Notman, M.T. (2006). Mothers and Daughters as Adults. Psychoanal. Inq., 26(1):137-153.

(2006). Psychoanalytic Inquiry, 26(1):137-153

Mothers and Daughters as Adults

Malkah T. Notman, M.D.

For most women, their relationship with their mothers, both external and internal, remains important throughout life, although it may be intensely ambivalent. The tension between the ongoing process of differentiation and developing a sense of self, and also maintaining the attachments that have been present during development into adulthood, continue to be present, fluctuating with life events and changes for both daughters and mothers. The body with its similarities to the mother, mutual identification, and competitive aspects is a central area for experiencing this relationship. A patient who illustrates these processes is described.

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