Title

Discrepancies Between Explicit and Implicit Self-Esteem: Implications for Mate Retention Strategies and Perceived Infidelity

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2012

Department

Psychology

Abstract

The purpose of the present study was to examine whether the association between explicit self-esteem and relationship outcomes was moderated by implicit self-esteem. This was accomplished by asking 210 undergraduates who were currently involved in romantic relationships to complete measures of their explicit self-esteem, implicit self-esteem, mate retention strategies, and likelihood of future infidelity. Implicit self-esteem was found to moderate the association between high explicit self-esteem and relationship outcomes for male participants such that men with discrepant high self-esteem (i.e., high explicit self-esteem but low implicit self-esteem) reported less use of mate retention strategies and perceived a greater likelihood of future infidelity in their relationships during the next year. These findings provide additional support for the idea that fragile self-esteem may have consequences for the manner in which individuals perceive their relationships.

Publication Title

Journal of Social Psychology

Volume

152

Issue

6

First Page

670

Last Page

686