Past and present, day by day: Communication with former romantic partners, relationship-contingent self-esteem, and current relationship outcomes.
In an effort to illuminate factors delineating when communication with former romantic partners can be beneficial versus detrimental, this work examines how communication affects both the current and former relationships, and whether these associations vary as a function of one’s self-worth being tied to the relationship (i.e., relationship-contingent self-esteem, RCSE). Over three weeks, undergraduates in relationships who regularly communicated with a former partner (N = 46) completed nightly measures of former partner communication and satisfaction with current and former relationships. Results indicated that among those higher in RCSE, communication with former partners undermined current relationship satisfaction and bolstered former relationship satisfaction, patterns not evident among those lower in RCSE. For some, communication with former partners can be problematic for the current relationship.
Rodriguez, L. M., Wickham, R. E., Øverup, C. S., & Amspoker, A. B. (2016). Past and present, day by day: Communication with former romantic partners, relationship-contingent self-esteem, and current relationship outcomes. Journal of Research in Personality, 65, 62-67. doi: 10.1016/j.jrp.2016.09.005
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