Body surveillance predicts men's and women's perceived loneliness: A serial mediation model

Fei TENG, Wenyang GAO, Xishan HUANG, Kai Tak POON

Research output: Contribution to journalArticles

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Previous research on self-objectification mainly focuses on its influences on intrapersonal psychological distress whereas our study examined whether self-objectification would influence interpersonal distress (i.e., loneliness) and its corresponding mechanisms in a sample of American women and men recruited with MTurk. Participants' self-objectification was indexed by their level of body surveillance, and we proposed that body surveillance would increase women's and men's tendency to experience shame about their body and decrease their general self-esteem, which would in turn predict their level of loneliness. A total of 373 Americans (235 women; Mdnage = 33 years-old, range = 18–77) participated in the present study, and the results provided support for the proposed theoretical model. Specifically, we found that body surveillance positively predicted people's body shame, and body shame negatively predicted self-esteem, which in turn predicted people's loneliness. Moreover, this mediational model was not different between men and women. These results expand the scope of investigation by incorporating male samples, and they suggest that in addition to intrapersonal consequences, self-objectification can also influence people's interpersonal well-being. Implications were discussed. Copyright © 2018 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)97-108
JournalSex Roles
Volume81
Issue number1-2
Early online dateOct 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2019

Citation

Teng, F., Gao, W., Huang, X., & Poon, K.-T. (2019). Body surveillance predicts men's and women's perceived loneliness: A serial mediation model. Sex Roles, 81(1-2), 97-108. doi: 10.1007/s11199-018-0977-6

Keywords

  • Self-objectification
  • Body surveillance
  • Loneliness
  • Body shame
  • Self-esteem

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