Title

Never Let Them See You Cry: Self-Presentation as a Moderator of the Relationship Between Exclusion and Self-Esteem

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

10-1-2013

Department

Psychology

Abstract

A debate exists concerning whether exclusion harms self-esteem. We hypothesized that social exclusion does harm self-esteem, but that this effect is evident only when self-presentational concerns to appear fine are minimal or people are unable to alter their report of self-esteem. In the first three studies, participants' explicit and implicit self-esteem were measured following an exclusion or comparison condition where self-presentational pressures were likely high. Because respondents can easily control their reports on explicit measures, but not on implicit ones, we hypothesized that exclusion would result in lower self-esteem only when implicit measures were used. Results confirmed this hypothesis. In the final study, self-presentational concerns were directly manipulated. When self-presentational concerns were high, only implicit self-esteem was lowered by exclusion. But, when such concerns were low, this impact on self-esteem was seen on implicit and explicit measures. Implications for the sociometer hypothesis and the recent self-esteem debate are discussed.

Publication Title

PERSONALITY AND SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY BULLETIN

Volume

39

Issue

10

First Page

1293

Last Page

1305