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Pychology Research Factors That Affect Long Interpersonal Relationships

1184 words - 5 pages

Factors that Affect Long Interpersonal RelationshipsLong-term interpersonal relationships and the factors that keep couples together has beena topic in research that reminds us how these factors come into play as the length of therelationship increases. Rusbult (1983) offered three factors that affect long-term relationships.The first factor was satisfaction, depending on if the individuals in relationship were satisfied (e.g.,happy) or dissatisfied (e.g., unhappy) with their relationship it would lead to how long theirrelationship lasted. The second factor was lack of alternatives, if the individuals felt that they hadno alternatives to the present relationship (e.g., no other person to have a relationship with) or ifthey did have alternatives this would affect how long the relationship lasted. The third factor wasinvestment of resources, depending on how much the individuals put into the relationship (e.g.money, time, and effort) that would depend on how long the relationship persisted. Arriaga andAgnew (2001) believed that Rusbult's three factors dealt with how long relationships last but theybelieved that there was a fourth factor that affected long-term relationships. The factor wasPsychological Commitment. This factor had three components, which are psychologicalattachment, long-term orientation and intent to persist. Arriaga and Agnew 's model sharessimilarities with Rusbult's three factors. According to Arriaga and Agnew, Rusbult's three factorsaffect stability indirectly by affecting commitment.The purpose of the current study was to test Arriaga and Agnew's (2001) model. We hadfour hypotheses in our study. The first hypothesis was stability would be positively correlated withcommitment. The second hypothesis was commitment would be positively correlated withsatisfaction. The third hypothesis was commitment would be positively correlated withFactors that Affect 4investment. Finally, the fourth hypothesis was commitment would be negatively correlated withavailability of alternatives. In this study we used length of relationship as an operational definitionof relationship stability.MethodParticipantsEighty-one students (47 women, 34 men) ages 18 and above were chosen randomly at LeMoyne College by our class as part of our project. Most of the participants were friends orassociates of our class. Out of the eighty-one students chosen, thirty-one women and twenty-onemen were presently involved in a relationship. Sixteen women and thirteen men were not presentlyinvolved in a relationship. Data from six students were omitted from the analysis. The reason weomitted these students was due to them being married, homosexual or having incomplete data.Due to most of our students being in heterosexual relationships we felt that the six studentsneeded to be omitted to make our results more defined.MaterialsSurvey. We used a 22-item questionnaire that would determine the extent to whichsatisfaction; alternatives, investment and commitment are related to...

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