09.29.09 Overview: Background Macro: “Big” pictures explanations for why breakup / divorce happens Micro: Interdependence Theory / Commitment Stages of breakup Pathway to dissolution – most ppl go thru it but not all, stages • Recognition of problems o Tends to be gradual (builds up – women usually initiates) o “Intrapsychic” : happens in your own head • Exposure of probelmes to partner o Dyadic process: put cards on table (may be done directly or indirectly – preparation phase) o Begin pulling out o “too busy”, short interactions, etc. • Negotiation (Not for everyone) o Stay or go? o How will conflict be resolved? o “I’ll be better….” • Transformation of the relationship o Focus on self future vs. relationship future o Symbolic purging (e.g. Song, place, photos, haircuts, etc) – because it is identifying a part of you, you want to change it (develop a strong mental relation with places, activities, etc with your ex-partner, so it is really hard to get over it) o Social phase: seek out others (You end up have to pull yourself out of a network – HARD) (Anniversary effect: elders are highly likely to die around a special anniversary) • Grave-dressing o Account making: create stories of how and why ended (you were so intertwined, and it’s really hard to un-do that) o Convince self that still have market value o Move on… Pathway to dissolution = Stage model - Problem with stage models: not everybody will have the same experience • Recognition of problems
o The point in the relationship when someone realizes there’s something wrong o Tends to be gradual Women initiate most breakups/divorces o Intrapsychic: happens in your own head; not necessarily telling your partner about your doubts • Exposure of problems to partner o Dyadic process: put the cards on the table – can happen directly or indirectly o Begin pulling out – start creating psychological/emotional distance o “Too busy,” short interactions, etc. • Negotiation o Begin to discuss whether to stay or end the relationship o How will the conflict be resolved? • Transformation of the relationship o When we become interdependent, all of our behaviors become tied to theirs; our identity has to go back to what it was before the relationship o Focus on self future vs. relationship future o Symbolic purging (e.g., song, place, photos, haircut, etc.) – doing things symbolically to get the person out of your life Picture: “the cathartic post-breakup haircut” Why a haircut? Hair is part of your identity and is the easiest thing to changeabout your appearance in a short amount of time Anniversary effect: we associate people with specific dates; example: Your spouse dies. There is high chance that your own death will be around the time of a significant anniversary o Social phase: seek out others; start reaching back out to the networks you abandoned while in the relationship • Grave-dressing o Putting it behind you o Account making: create stories of how/why it ended – tend to be pretty self-serving o
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- Spring '08
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