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Spaulding, E.C. (1993). The Inner World of Objects and Lesbian Development. Psychoanal. Soc. Work, 1(2):5-32.

(1993). Psychoanalytic Social Work, 1(2):5-32

The Inner World of Objects and Lesbian Development

Elaine C. Spaulding, Ph.D.

The central question explored by this study was whether or not evidence of mature object relations development could be found in a non-clinical sample of lesbians using measures of cognitive object relations. A non-clinical group of adult lesbians who reported positive identities were interviewed for comparison with the theoretical norm of object relations development in lesbians. The psychoanalytic literature supports the view that lesbians do not attain higher levels of object relations and have serious impairments in the level of object relations. These structural impairments indicate degrees of vulnerability to chronic depression and other forms of psychopathology. The article summarizes the relevant literature, and presents alternative data applicable to clinical assessment with lesbians.

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