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Abstract

The present research tested the extent to which perceptions of early childhood experiences with parents predicted general views of the self (i.e., self-esteem) and others (i.e., humanity-esteem), and whether attachment self- and other-models mediated these links. Two studies used a new measure of humanity-esteem (Luke & Maio, 2004) to achieve these ends. As expected, indices that tapped a positive model of the self in relationships were associated with high self-esteem and indices that tapped a positive model of others in relationships were associated with high humanity-esteem. Also, early attachment experiences with fathers and mothers predicted self-esteem and humanity-esteem, respectively, and these direct relations were mediated by the attachment models. The studies, therefore, provide direct evidence that attachment measures predict general favorability toward the self and others, while revealing novel differences in the roles of childhood experiences with fathers and mothers.