Relational maintenance for nonvoluntary dislike relationships
Whitehead, Sarah Ann
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The purpose of this study was to combine the efforts of previous research on distancing behavior and nonvoluntary relationships (Hess, 2000, 2002) and apply it to two different samples---an adult community sample and a college student sample---with the goal of explaining how the samples might illustrate in the types of distancing behaviors used in nonvoluntary relationships. In addition the cognitive satisfaction of the relationship was measured. It was hypothesized that there would be a difference between the two samples, that adults would use more hostile behaviors, and that less hostile behaviors would mean a participant reports lower levels of satisfaction. It was found that compared to the student sample, adults reported significantly lower uses of 3 out of 4 distancing behaviors. Those participants who used avoidance or hostility distancing behaviors more often also reported the most cognitive satisfaction. Reasons for these findings are discussed.