Share via Email 'When my eldest daughter was 15, I wasn't even allowed to butter her toast in the morning because it was seen as controlling," says Annie Taylor. Conflict arises in most families when the children are adolescent, but mothers and daughters seem to squabble that much more intensely during the teenage years. Recent research by Terri Apter, social psychologist at Cambridge University, suggests that mothers fight more often and for longer with their daughters than they do with their sons. The good news is that she found no correlation between the number of fights and the quality of the relationship. But mothers and daughters tend to identify much more closely with one another, and are far more committed to getting their point across. Girls fight to differentiate themselves from their mothers and from the little girl that they once were, while boys are more likely to withdraw completely from confrontation.