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Unformatted text preview: http://spr.sagepub.com Relationships Journal of Social and Personal DOI: 10.1177/0265407506070472 2006; 23; 901 Journal of Social and Personal Relationships Laura Stafford, Andy J. Merolla and Janessa D. Castle When long-distance dating partners become geographically close http://spr.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/23/6/901 The online version of this article can be found at: Published by: http://www.sagepublications.com On behalf of: International Association for Relationship Research can be found at: Journal of Social and Personal Relationships Additional services and information for http://spr.sagepub.com/cgi/alerts Email Alerts: http://spr.sagepub.com/subscriptions Subscriptions: http://www.sagepub.com/journalsReprints.nav Reprints: http://www.sagepub.co.uk/journalsPermissions.nav Permissions: http://spr.sagepub.com/cgi/content/refs/23/6/901 Citations at Ebsco Electronic Journals Service (EJS) on April 8, 2009 http://spr.sagepub.com Downloaded from When long-distance dating partners become geographically close Laura Stafford, Andy J. Merolla, & Janessa D. Castle Ohio State University ABSTRACT This study explored long-distance dating relationships (LDDRs) transition to geographic proximity. About half of LDDR partners experience this transition, whereas the other half end their relationships during separation. Among reunited relationships, one-third terminate within 3 months of reunion. Participants open-ended responses highlight changes associated with reunion, including the loss of autonomy; increased positive and negative knowledge; time management difficulties; and heightened conflict and jealousy. Desirable features of LDDRs (e.g., autonomy and novelty) appear to be lost, and missed, upon reunion. Individuals whose relationships terminated upon reunion were more likely to report missing aspects of LDDRs. Overall, we propose reunions facilitate relational and partner knowledge acquisi- tion, the dissipation of quixotic ideals, and increased partner interdependence. KEY WORDS : dating relationships dialectics long-distance relationships reunions turning points A process view of relationships entails the study of relational transform- ations (Conville, 1991). Such transformations vary in salience and subtlety and work to demarcate reformulations of relationships (Bolton, 1961). Bolton coined the term turning point to encapsulate such dynamic, inter- action-based changes. Building on Boltons conceptualization, Baxter and Bullis (1986) defined a relational turning point as any event or occurrence Journal of Social and Personal Relationships Copyright 2006 SAGE Publications (www.sagepublications.com),Vol. 23(6): 901919. DOI: 10.1177/0265407506070472 An earlier version of this article was presented at the 2005 meeting of the International Communication Association, New York, USA. All correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Laura Stafford, School of Communication, The Ohio State University,...
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