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3 - Relationship Maintenance Relational Dialectics Theory...

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Relationship Maintenance Relational Dialectics Theory - Dialectical Tensions o Connectedness vs. Autonomy Comfort level of how close you want to feel to them opposed to how individual you want to be “We’ve been so busy, I feel like we haven’t spent time together for forever.” “We’ve spent the whole weekend o Predictability vs. Novelty We’d like to know what we can anticipate in a relationship; have to have new things to keep it more interesting for both parties “I never know when we’re going to be able to spend time together. Let’s pick a night that we know is date night.” “I just want to go out and do something different this weekend. We always just stay in and watch a movie.” o Openness vs. Closedness How much of your life is transparent to the other person vs how much do you keep to yourself ( things you wouldn’t share in a romantic relationship: how many people you’ve been with for example) “You don’t really have to give me every single detail about your day.” “I never know what’s going on in your life. Tell me how your day went, how you’re feeling, something.” - Managing Tensions o Neutralization Compromising in the relationship, strive for balance or meeting the person somewhere in the middle of the tension “I don’t need to know every detail of your day.” Compromise: Pick something that stood out in your day and tell a lot about it; don’t tell everything about everything. o Separation Focus on one need in some part of the interaction and another need in other parts of the interaction; focus on one need at a time Autonomy vs. Connectedness During the week I’ll be with you, but on the weekend I’ll spend time with my friends and you can do your own thing too. o Segmentation Focusing on one dialectical need and not the other; cycle between which partner assigns each pole to certain activities and times “I’m going to be closed about my past relationships.” o Reframing
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Try to redefine the needs so they don’t seem like they’re in opposition to each other anymore What is this most like in terms of conflict style? Collaboration (or Cooperation); you’re reframing the problem in order to find solution that best fits everyones needs Relational Culture - Idioms o Unique ways of talking or referring to each other o Ex: Friend Jen and I hang out all the time, when people ask what you’re doing together, they say Jenk Jen and Nick - Rules o Each relationship will have a set of rules for how you act and how you do things o Ex: Never go to bed mad - Routines o Each relationship has a pattern of engagement o Ex: “We always eat dinner at five o’clock.”; you always go for a walk after dinner it’s a routine, it’s what you always do in your relationship - Rituals o Things you do together that are meaningful to you o Ex: celebration of an anniversary
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