Not all ideals are equal: Intrinsic and extrinsic ideals in relationships.
The ideal standards model suggests that greater consistency between ideal standards and actual perceptions of one’s relationship predicts positive relationship evaluations; however, no research has evaluated whether this differs across types of ideals. A self-determination theory perspective was derived to test whether satisfaction of intrinsic ideals buffers the importance of extrinsic ideals. Participants (N =195) in committed relationships directly and indirectly reported the extent to which their partner met their ideal on two dimensions: intrinsic (e.g., warm, intimate) and extrinsic (e.g., attractive, successful). Relationship need fulfillment and relationship quality were also assessed. Hypotheses were largely supported, such that satisfaction of intrinsic ideals more strongly predicted relationship functioning, and satisfaction of intrinsic ideals buffered the relevance of extrinsic ideals for outcomes.
Rodriguez, L. M., Hadden, B. W., & Knee, C. R. (2015). Not all ideals are equal: Intrinsic and extrinsic ideals in relationships. Personal Relationships, 22, 138-152. doi: 10.1111/pere.12068 [PMCID: 4371771]
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