Book Definition: The mental process by which an individual tries to become like another person, especially the same-sex parent.


In Your Own Words


  • Following in the footsteps of the same-sex parent.
  • Making a role model of a parent (mother for a girl, father for a boy).
  • Trying to mold one's personality and actions to be like those of another person, most likely the same-sex parent.

Examples/Functions



  • Going to medical school because your mother is a doctor.
  • Little brothers who want to be exactly like their older brothers.
  • A little girl who tries to dress up like her mom, and put on makeup like her mom.
  • You try to learn how to fix things, like your dad does. He teaches you how to fix doors, windows, etc.
  • Your dad played for the varsity football team all 4 years of high school and you want to try to match that trait by trying out for the school football team.
  • Your mom was a straight A student and you want to follow her foot steps, so you study all the time and put all your effort into your schoolwork.
  • A young boy sees his dad cook, and wants to learn how to cook for the family also.
  • Your dad played baseball so you get involved in baseball to be like him.
  • Your dad is Bill Gates, realizing the accomplishments he achieved , you still strive to achieve and match his success.
  • Becoming a poilice officer because your dad is a police officer.
  • A girl watching her mother put on make up makes her do the same so she can look pretty like her mom.
  • A boy watches his dad lift weights and wants to grow up strong just like him.
  • A little girl wearing heels because she sees her mom wearing and she wants to be just like her.
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Additional Resources


  1. http://changingminds.org/explanations/behaviors/coping/identification.htm
  2. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4K-wmQuWfrs