A comparison was made between the empirical literature describing the characteristics of bulimic adolescents and the empirical literature describing adolescents in the various identity statuses within Erikson/Marcia's stage/status theory. A pattern of similarities emerged. Bulimics and diffused persons have been described as having personal characteristics and familial descriptors which are similar. No comparable similarities were found for the other well researched transitional statuses, that is, moratorium, foreclosure, or achievement. Present theories of bulimia suggest that a disruption in the second individuation occurs. However, none have attempted to operationalize the disruption in the adolescent individuation in terms of the transitional status. The comparison of two empirical literatures leads to a number of testable hypotheses that may advance the understanding of bulimia.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Social Psychology
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Psychiatry and Mental health