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Chapter 7 Love and Communication in Intimate Relationships.

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Presentation on theme: "Chapter 7 Love and Communication in Intimate Relationships."— Presentation transcript:

1 Chapter 7 Love and Communication in Intimate Relationships

2 What Is Love? Difficult to define and/or measure –Special attitude with behavioral and emotional components –Different things to different people –Difficult to measure

3 Types of Love Passionate Love –Also known as romantic love or infatuation –Intense psychological feelings –Generalized physiological arousal –Strong sexual desire –Avoid conflict –Feelings of completeness –Short-lived

4 Types of Love Companionate Love –Less intense than passionate love –Friendly affection and deep attachment –Familiarity and tolerance for short-comings –More enduring than passionate love

5 Sternberg’s Triangular Theory of Love

6 Passion, Intimacy, and Commitment are the three love components –Passion builds then fades –Intimacy and commitment continue to build Variations in components yield different kinds of love –Intimacy alone = friendship –Passion alone = infatuation –Commitment alone = empty love

7 Sternberg’s Triangular Theory of Love

8 Lee’s Styles of Loving Romantic (eros) Game-playing (ludus) Possessive (mania) Compassionate (storge) Altruistic (agape) Pragmatic (pragma) Hypothesis that relationship success is influenced by compatibility in styles of loving

9 Falling in Love The chemistry of love –Neurotransmitters Norepinephrine Dopamine Phenylethylamine (PEA) Oxytocin –Endorphins –Loss of romantic love and neurotransmitter withdrawal

10 Falling in Love Proximity Proximity –Mere exposure effect Familiarity breeds liking or loving –Greater proximity often reflects shared interests

11 Falling in Love Similarity Similarity –Level of physical attractiveness –Age, educational status, and religion –Race and ethnicity Why Similarity? Share similar interests and activities Communicate better Confirm own views and experiences Supportive of values and beliefs

12 Role of Similarity in Relationships

13 Falling in Love Reciprocity Reciprocity –When someone shows they like us, we tend to like them back –Increases in self-esteem –Increases likelihood of relationship enduring

14 Falling in Love Physical Attractiveness Physical Attractiveness –Belief that “what’s beautiful is good” –Offer status by association –Most important in early stages –May be an indicator of physical health –Heterosexual males place greater emphasis on physical attractiveness

15 Attachment Attachment: Intense emotional tie between two individuals Adult attachments are influenced by our attachment to caregiver in infancy – Attachment Style (Ainsworth) Secure attachment Insecure attachment Anxious-ambivalent attachment Avoidant attachment

16 Attachment Attachment styles in adulthood –Paired couples often are similar in their attachment styles –Attachment style affects interaction in relationship

17 Attachment Styles and Relationships

18 Issues in Loving Relationships Relationship between love and sex –Relationship between the two is not always clear Consider “hook-ups” and “friends with benefits” –Questions to ask: Does sexual intimacy deepen a love relationship? Do men and women have different views of sex and love?

19 Sexual Orientation Attitudes About Love and Sex Stereotype same-sex relationships as primarily sexual –Generally seek loving, trusting, and caring relationships that embrace many dimensions of sharing Sex differences among lesbians and gay men are consistent with general sex difference in attitudes toward love and sex –Gay men are more likely than lesbians to separate love from sex –Lesbians more likely to postpone sex until intimacy has been established

20 Jealousy in Relationships Jealousy-prone person –Low self-esteem –High value on wealth and popularity Negative consequences –Precipitates partner violence –Stifles relationship development –Raises anxiety, depression, and anger Sex differences –Women more likely to acknowledge feelings of jealousy –Men tend to focus more on sexual involvement with another

21 Maintaining Relationship Satisfaction Ingredients in a lasting love relationship –Self-acceptance –Appreciation of each other’s qualities –Commitment –Good communication, realistic expectations, and shared interests –Ability to face and deal with conflict

22 Maintaining Relationship Satisfaction Characteristics of high quality relationships –Supportive communication –Companionship –Sexual expression and variety –Seeing partner as best friend –Maintaining frequent positive interaction

23 Maintaining Relationship Satisfaction Sexual Variety –Communication is critical –Be spontaneous –Plan for intimate time –Don’t worry about frequency “standards”

24 Discovering Partner’s Needs Ask questions –Yes/No questions –Open-ended questions –Either/Or questions Self-disclosure Discuss sexual preferences Give permission Learn to make requests

25 Taking Responsibility Make requests specific Use “I” language Expressing and receiving complaints –Choose right time and place –Temper complaints with praise –Avoid “why” questions –Limit to one complaint per discussion –Ask clarifying questions –Express your feelings –Focus on future changes

26 Talking: Getting Started Reading and discussing Sharing sexual histories Listening and feedback –Active listening –Providing feedback –Maintaining eye contact –Support communication efforts

27 Saying No Three step approach –Show appreciation for invitation –Say no in a clear, unequivocal fashion –Offer alternatives

28 Non-Verbal Sexual Communication Facial expressions Interpersonal distance Touching Sounds

29 Communication Patterns in Relationships Gottman’s constructive communication tactics –Leveling and editing –Validating –Volatile dialogue Gottman’s destructive communication tactics –Criticism –Contempt –Defensiveness –Stonewalling –Belligerence


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