This study examined the role of the relational self-construal, the degree to which people incorporate close relationships into their self-concept, in the Sociometer Theory, which claims that self-esteem is the output from relational acceptance or rejection. I hypothesized that (a) the relational self-construal will moderate the relationship between loneliness and self-esteem, and (b) the relational self-construal will moderate the relationship between the quality of relationships and self-esteem. A total of 183 undergraduates completed a series of online questionnaires. I found a significant negative correlation between loneliness and self-esteem. I also found that for women, but not men, the relational self-construal moderates the relationship between the quality of relationships and self-esteem. So, for high relational women, the quality of relationships is positively related to self-esteem, whereas for low relational women, there is no relationship between the quality of relationships and self-esteem. This study demonstrated the importance of the relational self-construal for relational theories such as the Sociometer theory. This study also suggested that gender differences play a role in the relationship between the quality of relationships, relational self-construal, and self-esteem.
Thoresen, Katelyn, "Relational Self-Construal Moderates Relationship between Relational Success and Self-Esteem" (2015). Honors Theses. 74.