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Lecture 7

PSYC 362 Lecture Notes - Lecture 7: Lexical Decision Task, Trait Theory, Habituation


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYC 362
Professor
Rebecca Cobb
Lecture
7

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Trajectories of Relationship Satisfaction:
Independent Contributions of Capitalization and
Support Perceptions
Abstract
Associations b/w perceptions of partner responses to disclosures about capitalization and support
experiences and relationship satisfaction
Capitalization and support covary, independently predict relationship satisfaction, are
compensatory processes
oIncreased relationship duration: support perceptions more associated w/ relationship
satisfaction, capitalization perceptions less associated
Capitalization
Responding to positive events by celebrating/sharing w/ others  extra benefit from experience
oBenefits at individual and relational levels
oPeople who capitalize have higher well-being and life satisfaction
2 dimensions of partner responses:
oActive vs passive
oConstructive vs deconstructive
oActive constructive (AC) good: trust, intimacy, satisfaction, short-term stability
oAll others bad
No research, but expect capitalization behaviors and perceptions decrease over time
oLess novel, more secure (don’t have to fake things)  requires more effort  decrease 
appear disinterested
oGood news for one may not be good for the couple over time: more intertwined
oBehaviors may become less valued
May remain stable over time
oNewlywed short-term support behavior stable
oNorms
oMay be easier than validating during conflict
Capitalization and Support
Is capitalization different from support for negative events?
Common features: process (share) and outcomes (handled well: good)
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Differences:
Support: deal w/ negative feelings, helps move on, more demanding of partners; capitalization:
maintain positive, helps remember, less demanding of partners
Empirically distinct: perceived responsiveness during support vs capitalization discussions only
mod. associated  related but distinct
Positive experiences in one domain may compensate for another (support from roommate vs
conflict w/ friends) – within relationships too?
Similarities:
Good communication skills affect both, good experiences in one domain are foundations for
others (broaden and build)
Possible course:
Early in relationship: share more good news, less reliant for support
omay be sensitive to responses to good news
opoor support may have less of an effect b/c less expectations for support
Later: poor responses to good news may have less of an effect, because relationship includes
other functions too
oSupport more important b/c interdependence
Current Study
Change in capitalization and support perceptions, satisfaction
Positive capitalization and support perceptions uniquely predict satisfaction
Interaction b/w capitalization and support
oPositive in one domain buffers negative in the other
Changes in one domain associated w/ changes in the other
Change in assoc. strength b/w capitalization-satisfaction and support-satisfaction
Discussion
Declines in perceptions of capitalization and support (over 1 year)
oMay be habituation
oBoth uniquely related to decreased relationship happiness
Reciprocal relationship b/w perceived responses to good and bad news
oGood capitalizers: good foundation  more willing to seek support (confident)
oGood supporters: more enthusiastic w/ good news
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Difficult times together: more relationship investment
Some support for compensation
oLess negative effects of poor support when positive capitalization
oLess negative effects of poor capitalization when positive support
Importance of capitalization and support perceptions changed
oCapitalization less strongly related to relationship satisfaction over time
oSupport more related over time
Non-significant when looking at 3 way interaction
Limitations and Future Directions
High attrition
More women participating and responding – but differences in perceptions and satisfaction
Mostly heterosexual
Data only from one member of couple
Self-report
3 waves of data (1 year)
Forgiveness: Integral to a Science of Close
Relationships?
Paradox: need relationships that will lead to emotional injuries
oMust be vulnerable for well-being
oWant to retaliate against harm
Emerging Research on Forgiveness in Close Relationships
No census yet
Freely chosen motivational transformation; overcome desire to seek revenge and avoid contact
oEffort by forgiver
oNot forgetting, condoning or pardon, not weakness
oForgiver asserts a right – recognize justification of negative feelings
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