Self-esteem is built up by a total pattern of successful experiences. Self-esteem can neither be quickly developed nor quickly destroyed. It deserves to be carefully guarded because it is often the difference between success and failure.
Eugene E. Jennings
The roles for men and women have changed over the last twenty years, becoming more chosen than imposed, less isomorphic with gender than in the past, less segregated as to function, and less often in separate worlds. Also, men and women appear less married now than previously. Single-parent families, divorced or widowed adults, individuals between marriages or not looking for commitment lead more households today than in the past. Whatever their situation people meeting and interacting with other, both professionally and personally, view each other through the lingering filter of traditional sex role stereotypes. Psychology views the developmental struggle to separate and individuate (Gilligan, 1982; Miller, 1976) as progressing along linear and predictable stages. Males typically separate from the mother and assume their own unique personality (Freud, 1963). Females sterotypically identify with the mother, also assuming their own unique personality, but less independent. Newer roles for both men and women depict males identifying with mothers (as well as fathers) and females with fathers (as well as mothers), thus creating new gender types of feminine males and masculine females, or androgynous individuals, and