Images of the parents and protective mechanisms in youths



Protective mechanisms play significant role in development and maintenance of strong, non-controversial, positive sense of Self. Crucial importance of some parameters of mother-child interactions such as exactingness, austerity, control, anxiety for the child, satisfaction with the relationships for development of peculiarities and intensity of psychological defenses was proved. However, images of parents develop not only in actual interactions with parents but also they are influenced by different internal psychological processes; these images are subject to age and gender dynamics. The article describes the results of empirical research of the influence of images of the parents as well as representations of the parents as a couple on the level of protective mechanisms development in youths with high and low levels of psychological well-being. It is shown that image of parents as controlling and emotionally detached ones correlates with more intensive immature, primitive defenses. To the contrary, image of parents as a couple of partners decreases the proportion of immature defenses in the youths with low level of psychological well-being. Thus the results of the research widen the understanding of the factors influencing the development of protective psychological functioning.

General Information

Keywords: image of parents, protective mechanisms, youth, low level of psychological well-being.

Journal rubric: Developmental Psychology

Article type: scientific article

For citation: Kalina O.G., Barintseva I.V., Pankova T.V. Images of the parents and protective mechanisms in youths [Elektronnyi resurs]. Psikhologicheskaya nauka i obrazovanie [Psychological Science and Education], 2011. Vol. 3, no. 2 (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)


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Information About the Authors

Oleg G. Kalina, PhD in Psychology, Assistant Professor at Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy Department, Psychological Counceling Faculty, Moscow State University of Psychology and Education, Moscow, Russia, e-mail:

Irina V. Barintseva, medical psychologist at the psychoneurological clinic #7, Moscow, Russia, e-mail:

Tatyana V. Pankova, psychologist, psychotherapist, Russia, e-mail:



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