Perceptual biases, affect, and behavior in the relationships of dependents and self-critics

J Pers Soc Psychol. 1998 Jul;75(1):230-41. doi: 10.1037//0022-3514.75.1.230.


Aspects of interpersonal, personality, and cognitive models of depression were tested in a college sample. The perceptions and actual interpersonal behaviors of dependent and self-critical women and their romantic partners were assessed during a conflict-resolution task. Dependent women were characterized by positive biases in the perception of lovingness expressed within the relationship. The partners of dependent women, however, experienced a decrease in positive affect and a trend toward increasing hostility during the conflict-resolution task. Self-critical women were objectively rated as less loving and more hostile, and their partners were also rated as less loving. Self-critics also exhibited negative biases in self-perceptions of submissiveness. The results are interpreted within a comprehensive framework integrating various elements of interpersonal, personality, and cognitive models of depression.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Affect*
  • Dependency, Psychological*
  • Depression / psychology
  • Female
  • Gender Identity
  • Hostility
  • Humans
  • Internal-External Control
  • Interpersonal Relations*
  • Male
  • Personality Assessment
  • Problem Solving
  • Self Concept*
  • Social Behavior*
  • Social Perception*
  • Students / psychology