Models and relationship quality in dating
For example, in the case of a bad relationship, your thoughts may be negative, telling you that your partner is not good for you, but your feelings may still be positive.
We may continue to love our partners, even though we consciously recognize that we are involved in bad relationships. A test of positive illusions versus shared reality models of relationship satisfaction among gay, lesbian, and heterosexual couples.
Although “bad” relationships include abusive relationships, the research below can help to elucidate why we stay in low-quality relationships which are not marred by abuse as well (see Copp et al., 2015). We Can Be Satisfied With Unsatisfactory Relationships In recent research exploring women’s decisions about whether to stay in or to leave their relationships, the single most important determinant of women’s decisions to remain in their relationships was relationship satisfaction (Edwards et al., 2011). Social Psychological and Personality Science, 6(1), 56-64.
Men with lower self-esteem, as well as men who are less physically attractive than their partners, may be more likely to use manipulation to prevent their partners from leaving their relationships (Buss and Shackelford, 1997; Holden et al., 2014). Ideals, perceptions, and evaluations in early relationship development. When our partners reveal negative characteristics, we may downgrade the importance of those characteristics and upgrade the importance of the positive traits our mates do possess (Fletcher et al., 2000). Low-Quality Alternatives If you are in an undesirable relationship, you might consider alternatives to that relationship, including being alone or entering a different relationship (Thibaut and Kelley, 1986). If you perceive that an alternative might be preferable to your current situation, you are more likely to leave your relationship, but if you perceive lower-quality alternatives, you are more likely to stay, even in an unsatisfying relationship. In both gay and lesbian as well as heterosexual couples, those who view their partners more positively also report more relationship satisfaction (Conley et al., 2009). How can we see our partners positively when we are in undesirable relationships? I’m hot, so I’d say you’re not: The influence of objective physical attractiveness on mate selection.