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Idealization and Communication in Long-Distance Premarital Relationships

Idealization and Communication in Long-Distance Premarital Relationships

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Idealization and Communication in Long-Distance Premarital Relationships

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  1. Idealization and Communication in Long-Distance Premarital Relationships Laura Stafford and James R. Reske Ohio State University Journal of Family Relations 1990 -Hannah Jansen

  2. Idealization and Communication in Long-Distance Premarital Relationships Laura Stafford and James R. Reske Ohio State University Journal of Family Relations 1990 -Hannah Jansen

  3. Idealization and Communication in Long-Distance Premarital Relationships Laura Stafford and James R. Reske Ohio State University Journal of Family Relations 1990 -Hannah Jansen

  4. Why Study Premarital Relationships? • Studying premarital relationships is essential in order to develop a research-theory based approach to marriage counseling. • “Events that occur and attitudes that are formed during the premarital stage of a relationship, impact satisfaction and stability in marriage”. (p247)

  5. So why study Long Distance relationships? • Long distance relationships are very common in the college population. approximately 1/3 of college students consider themselves to be part of a long distance relationship. • Face to face communication is limited in a long distance (LD) relationship which may have an effect on the longevity of the relationship if it is desired.

  6. SO … what’s the problem with Idealization? • Idealization: to regard or represent as perfect. • The concern is that LD couples experience idealization for a longer period of time increasing the risk of marital dissatisfaction and disillusion.

  7. hypothesis 1. Long distance couples will report being more idealized therefore report being more in love and satisfied with the perceived quality of their communication. 2. LD relationships will report less frequent face to face interaction and a larger portion of their communication will be via telephone conversation, or email. (DUH)

  8. Hypothesis cont. 3. The constrained amount of communication will be directly related to the measure of idealization, love, satisfaction, and quality of communication.

  9. Theoretical Construct Restricted communication and how it relates to Idealization in Long distance relationships.

  10. Operational definitions (instruments used) • Questionnaire booklet • Participants were asked about their age, length of dating relationship ect.

  11. Operational definitions continued…. • 4 Standardized scales • 1. Idealized Distortion Scale (IDS) • Direct measure of idealization • .92 internal consistency reliability • .92 test, re-test reliability • 2. Locke-Wallace Marital adjustment test (MAT) • Most widely used test for marital satisfaction and has been modified for premarital relationships. • .90 reliability

  12. 3. Rubin’s Love Scale Measures romantic Love construct .84 internal consistency 4. Bienvenu’s Marital Communication Inventory (MCI) A 19 item scale concerning the perceived quality of marital communication. .93 split half reliability ………

  13. Method/participants • Participants were students in an introductory communications class from a large university. Students were allotted extra credit for participating in the study. • Students were instructed to involve their partner for the study. None of the couples were engaged or married. • Total: 34 Geographically close couples 37 Long distance couples Average age 21.04 yrs

  14. Procedure • All of the GC couples were seated in a communication laboratory and then asked to complete a questionnaire. Subjects weren’t allowed to consults partners during this time. • LD couples filled out the same survey, with one form mailed to the other participant; given instructions to fill out and return form without consulting his/her partner • The individuals from the communication class were contacted six months and a year later and asked if they were still in a dating relationship with their partner (LD or GC)

  15. 2 separate multivariate analysis of variance were conducted: 1. IV- Geographic separation DV- Scores from 4 standardized scales Long distance average 462 miles apart Geographically close not specified 2. IV- Geographical separation DV-Interaction (communication methods) Analysis

  16. Results…..Means and standard deviations of dependant var. by geographic location

  17. Results cont…correlations between interaction variables and relational variables

  18. When couples were asked if they were likely to marry: 80.3% LD couples said YES! 62.3% GC couples said YEA!! 6 months after the study, one member of each LD and GC dyad was contacted and asked if they were still together as a couple: 24 out of the 34 GC contacted were still together All 25 of the LD contacted were still together Results .. Again!!!

  19. Discussion • The findings support the idea that long distance couples are more idealized, more satisfied with their relationship and with their communication and more in love than the geographically close couples • Possibility exists that these individuals actually have “better” relationships than the GC relationships so the positive bias found is a result of higher quality relationships. • The findings also seem to assume long distance communication was restricted.

  20. What I would change???? • Increase sample size, include older couples. • Continue study through marriage

  21. The End!!!