Forming Relationships in Young and Middle Adulthood

Forming Relationships in Young and
Middle Adulthood
Chapter 11
Based in feeling, reciprocity, choice
Less emotionally, intense than romantic
Help self-esteem, self-awareness, self-respect
Facilitate socialization in adulthood
Adult Friends
 Stages (ABCDE)
 Acquaintanceship
 Buildup
 Continuation
 Deterioration
 Ending
 A-B depends on similarity, communication, importance of relationship
 E depends on availability of alternatives
Adult Friends
 More friends in young adulthood than at any other time
 Critical during adulthood as life satisfaction linked w/
quality of friends
 Help manage stress
 Linked w/ longevity
Adult Friends
 3 broad themes underlay adult friends
 Affective component
 Self-disclosure, intimacy, affection, support, trust, loyalty, commitment
 Communal nature
 Participate in supportive activities
 Sociability
 Friends are source of fun, recreation
Siblings As Friends
 Important relationship for most
 Peaks during adolescence & late life
 At all times women place more importance
Gender Differences: Friends
 Women
 Friendships based on intimacy, emotional sharing, disclosure of
personal matters
 More relationships than men
 Men
 Friendships based on shared activities or interests (e.g, sports)
& competition
 Less intimacy & disclosure
 Sternberg
 Passion
 Intimacy
 Commitment
 In a lasting love relationship
 Passion high early I & C low (but I rising fast)
 Passion fades, I stabilizes & C rises
Falling In Love
 Assortative Mating
 Similarity predictions attraction
 Only to a point
 Only for key, important dimensions
• Religion, sex, politics, physical appearance
Falling In Love
 Compatibility leads to application of 3 filters (Murstein)
 Stimulus
 Appearance, social class, manners match?
 Values
 Values match?
 Role
 Ideas about relationship, communication style gender roles match
 All YES = couple formation
Abusive Relationships
 Continuum of aggression
 Verbal - physical - severe - murder
 Less severe common
 25%-40% of relationships display less severe physical abuse (punching,
slapping) occasionally
 Severe less common
 Usually long pattern of abuse of male partner
Abusive Relationships
 Cause of abuse depends on type of abuse
 Verbal: need to control, jealousy, misuse of power (all also impact
more severe forms of abuse)
 Physical: abused as child, alcohol, positive attitudes towards
violence, aggressive temperament (all also impact more severe forms of
 Severe/murder: personality disorder, emotional instability, poor
Abusive Relationships
 Cause also depends on gender
 Need for control, power, jealousy M > W
 Culture key as well
 Cultures valuing female honor, passivity, nurturing, loyal
supporters of higher-status males more accepting of abuse
 Singlehood
 ~80% men 20-24 single
 ~70% women 20-24 single
 Some career focused early in adulthood
 More difficult for single women than men
 Social pressure stronger on women to marry
 Men marry later
 2x as many African Americans single in young adulthood
 Never married women in 30s
 Acute distress & wish to be married OR
 Emotionally volatile OR
 Happy single
 When does one decide to be single?
 Gradual process for most
 Advantages & disadvantages
 Greater freedom
 More lonely
 Men: higher mortality, alcoholism, suicide rates
 Women: more vulnerable to violent crime & extra duties at work
 Dramatic increase in past 30 years
 Most are 25-44 (v. > 45 in 1970s)
 3 primary reasons for cohabitation
 Limited: convenience ($, sexual access, no commitment)
 Premarital: trial marriage
 Substitute marriage: long-term commitment w/o marriage
 Cultural differences abound
 Sweden: 99% of couples live together before marriage & 25%
 China: cohabitation rare
 Impacts on marital success
 Reduces marital satisfaction
 Increases risk of divorce
Gay & Lesbian Couples
 In most ways they are similar to heterosexual couples
 Some differences do emerge
 Less likely to argue about
 Values, social-political issues
 More likely to argue about
 Trust, former lovers
Gay & Lesbian Couples
 Gender differences more key
 Men: separate sex & love, have more short term relationships
 Women: connect sex w/ love, have fewer, longer lasting
 Gay couples report less family support
 Legal system fails to recognize rights of gay partners
 Median age increased in past 30 years
 Younger you marry higher risk of divorce
 < 20 3x higher rate than 20s & 6x higher rate than 30s
 Factors predicting marital success
 Identity
 Homogamy (similarity)
 Perceived equality (fair exchange)
Marital Happiness
 Peaks & valleys
 Generally happiest early & late
 Drops during children
 Rises after children leave home
 Best if dependence is equal for both partners
Keeping a Marriage Happy?
Make time
Express love
Be there in times of need
Constructive communication
Show interest
Forgive, understand
Family Life Cycle
 Having children bring benefits & problems
 Personal satisfaction/needs, etc
 Financial, personal sacrifices
 Decision to have kids impacted by Fs
Having Children?
 Feminine intrapsychic determinants
 Relationship w/ parents, flexibility, feminine identification
 Marriage determinants
 Stability, support satisfaction, stress management
Having Children?
 Career determinants
 Responsibility, satisfaction, change possible
 Lifestyle determinants
 $, child-free relationship, comparison group
Parental Role
 Currently couples have fewer kids later
 Older mothers more affectionate, sensitive
 Older fathers more invested, spends more time w/ child
 Being a parent very stressful
 New responsibilities
 Changes relationship (ALL about child)
 Worse for mother (especially is she works)
 Men spend ~44% of the time raising kids v. moms
Single Parents
 Mostly women due to
 Divorce
 Keeping child out of wedlock
 Ethnic differences: 70% AA births out of wedlock
 Impacts on parents
 Emotional difficulty
 Financial problems (worse for single mothers)
 Dating difficult (lonely)
Alternative Parenting
 Gay couples raising children
 No negative impacts
 Some potential positives
 Divorce rate - 50% in US
 Highest in Russia, lowest in Netherlands
 Increased in developed countries recently
 Changes in social norms, laws
 Reasons cited by men & women for D
 Unhappy, infidelity, sexual problems
 Men: alcohol abuse by self, women’s lib
 Women: alcohol abuse by spouse, physical abuse
 Factors impacting divorce
 Macro reasons
 Social-cultural changes/values, gender roles
 Demographics reasons
 Age at marriage, parental divorce, cohabitation
 Interpersonal reasons
 Infidelity, violence, $, children, growing apart
 Impacts of divorce on couple
 Emotional problems (lasting)
 Depressed, rejected, angry, disappointed, unhappy
 Divorce hangover
 Unable to let go and move on as single person
 Preoccupation predictor of poor adjustment
• Men: accept blame, move out, social life changed
• Women: fewer remarriage, friends prospects, $ troubles
 Relationship w/ children
 70% mothers regain custody after divorce
 Fathers become negligent rapidly
 Problems extend to divorce w/ adult children
 Emotional difficulties & poor father relationship
 Very common (W < M)
 Average wait is 4 years
 Increased change of divorce (even more w./. stepchildren)
 Women benefit more than men
Random flashcards
State Flags

50 Cards Education

Countries of Europe

44 Cards Education

Art History

20 Cards StudyJedi

Sign language alphabet

26 Cards StudyJedi

Create flashcards