AbstractThe aim of the study is to see you will be more truthful when it comes tothe rules in relationships between the genders. Particularly on themaintenance and repair of the relationship.Previous research showed that it was the female partner who did all thework in maintaining and the repairing of the relationship. Dindia andBaxter (1987) showed the longer a couple were married the lessstrategies they needed.My hypothesis is that women will be more truthful and willing to workharder and the repair and maintenance of their relationship.The sample was of 10 participants of varying ages 5 males and 5females.The participants were given instruction sheets and if they were willing toparticipate in the study they signed consent forms. They were given 13questions to answer from1-5 using the Likert Scale. When the questionswere completed they were given debrief sheets with the tutor‟s contactinformation on it.The some male participants scored higher than some female participantsin certain questions but in questions like trust and faithfulness they scoredsimilar.
Introduction.Social psychology includes the study of social behaviour which happensbetween two people when they are in a relationship, also what it takes toomaintain the relationship. The topic is interpersonal attraction. Thesituational factors in forming relationships have often come into play,factors like proximity, exposure and familiarity. You also have personalfactors such as similarity, physical attractiveness and reciprocal liking.Proximity this is the physical or functional distance between people.Kerckoff (1974) called it the „field of availables‟. Festinger et al (1950)studied student friendship patterns in university campus housing. Hefound that students were friendlier with those living next door, lessfriendlier with those living two doors away and least friendly with thoseliving at the end of the corridor.Proximity provides the minimum conditions necessary for attraction tostart and maintain itself, remember a person invading our personal spacetoo closely will make us uncomfortable until we know them better.Exposure and familiarity, Zajonc et al (1971) asked subjects to evaluatephotos of strangers and found that those strangers who appeared moreoften than others were rated more positively.Segal (1974) studied police cadets who were assigned to their rooms andclassroom seats alphabetically, he found they were more likely to ratesomeone as a friend if they were close in the alphabet to them.Repeated exposure may give a greater chance that negativecharacteristics will be found in the other person or that boredom orstimulus satiation may occur. Most research however has supported thelink between familiarity and attraction.Personal factors also come into play with interpersonal relationships.There is similarity; we want the most attractive person possible in realitywe tend to be attracted by similarity.Griffit and Veitch (1974) studied 13 males who spent 10 days in a nuclearfall-out shelter, and concluded that those who were similar liked eachother the best by the end. Snyder and Fromkin (1980) suggest that wedislike people who are too like us, as we like to see ourselves as unique.Physical attractiveness, research found that people are not only drawntowards those who are physically attractive but see these people aspsychologically attractive as well. Dion (1972) using photographs of 7
year old children found that attractive children were less likely to bethought of anti-social than unattractive children. Physical attractiveness isnot absolute or objective „beauty is in the eye of the beholder‟ and it canbe influenced by culture and gender.Reciprocal Liking is a subtle form of similarity is basically we like thosepeople who like us. Aronson and Linder (1965) found experimentalsupport for the „gain-loss‟ theory by letting subjects overhear opinions ofthem. In general our liking depends upon how much we respect theopinions and motivations of the people who praise us.Interpersonal relationships can obviously have many different kinds ofeffects on the individuals involved in them. However most is probablyknown about the effects of interpersonal relationships especially marriageon happiness, mental health and physical health.Bradburn (1969) conducted a study in America and found that 35% ofmarried men and 38% of married women said they were “very happy”.However this study was conducted at a time when marriage was the normand living together outside of wedlock was considered outrageous.On mental health Cochrane (1988) found that the admissions to mentalhospitals was only 0.2% for married couples compared to 0.77% for thosesingle and 1.4% for those who were divorced.Finally on physical health, Lynch (1977) conducted a study and found thatcouples in marriage were less likely to die at the same age as those whowere single divorced or widowed.Dindia and Baxter (1987) interviewed 50 married couples and askedquestions regarding maintenance strategies for their relationship. Twotypes of strategies emerged, repair and maintenance.The strategies towards the maintenance of the relationship werepreventive and the strategies towards repair were to repair any damagedone to the relationship. The researchers identified 49 different strategiesfor maintenance e.g. spending time together in the evenings, telephonewhen away from home. To repair e.g. issuing ultimatums, talking overproblem(s).The researchers found the couples that had been married for anextended time used fewer maintenance strategies than newly marriedcouples. This may be the result of familiarity –knowing their partner sowell- a lot of the ground work would have already been done therelationship could „run itself‟.
It also may be an awareness that maintenance becomes „second nature‟and for this reason it wasn‟t reported to the researchers.
Aim.The research that will be conducted will compare views that couples havefor their relationships between genders. The research means to find whatrules couples have and their importance for the maintenance or repair oftheir relationship. This study is hoping to find how important and howtruthful the participants are regarding their relationship.Hopefully the study will show that women are more truthful and theirrelationship means more to them. Also that women are willing to workharder to maintain and repair their relationship.
HypothesisThe differences between male and females in the perceived importanceof rules in relationships between couples. I feel that the femaleparticipants will be more truthful and they will make the effort to maintainand repair any damage to their relationship. In saying this, the results alldepend on the ages of the participants especially the male participants.
MethodThe study will be of non-experimental design, using a structuredquestionnaire with 13 questions which will be scored using the LikertScale of 1-5. The sample size was 5 males and 5 females of variousages.
ProcedureThe participants were given the instruction sheet and if they were willingto take part in the study they signed the consent form.The participants then answered 13 questions. On completion of questionsthey were given the debrief sheet with the tutor‟s contact information ifthey wanted to know the results of the study.
DiscussionThe results of the study were quite surprising, instead of getting theresults I was expecting I was given a completely different set of data. Itseems that male participants in the study scored higher than some of thefemale participants on certain questions.My hypothesis was that women would be more truthful and they will makethe effort to maintain and repair any damage to their relationship. Insaying this, the results all depended on the ages of the participantsespecially the male participants.As ethical considerations would not allow me to ask if any of theparticipants were already in a relationship or state their ages I do notknow if some if the male scores were because of this. Or if these scoresreflected what they wanted from a future relationship.Previous research in this area showed that it was the female partner thatdid most of the maintenance and repair of the relationship. Especially ifthe relationship was in the early stages. Dindia and Baxter (1987) theirstudy showed if you have been married for an extended length of time oreven if you have been living with your partner for an extended length oftime your relationship ran itself.I feel my research shows that males seem to be taking more of aninterest in health of the relationship they are in, and this like trust andfaithfulness are an important issue to them.The sample of participants was too small I think it would have workedbetter with a larger sample. I feel that the study could be improved byadding two further groups into the study. Group 1 would be 10 males and10 females aged between 18-24 and group 2 would be 10 males and 10females over 25 years of age.
ConclusionAlthough previous research showed that it was the woman that made therelationship work or couples let the relationship run itself especially if theyhad been married for an extended period of time.My research was about relationship rules between genders. My resultsshowed that males nowadays seemed more interested in the health oftheir relationship also they were willing to work at the repair andmaintenance of it.
ReferencesEysenck, Michael W. Psychology A Student‟s Handbook 2000Psychology Press Ltd UK.Hill, Graham. As & A level psychology through diagrams. 2001 OxfordUniversity Press Ltd. Oxford.