Perceptions of Marriage and Divorce
Sarah Allen, Steven Harris, Kelly Roberts, Alan Hawkins, Mattison Doman, Sarah Allen, Steven Harris, Kelly Roberts, Alan Hawkins, Kasey Longley, Frank Fincham
Kasey Longley will be reading comments of papers prepared by Kari Adamsons.
Facilitator: Sarah Allen
- Research & Theory
About the Session
- 413-01 - Mapping the Contours of Relationship Change and Stability in Divorce Ideation Over Time: A Longitudinal Qualitative Study
By Sarah Allen, Steven Harris, Kelly Roberts, Alan Hawkins, Mattison Doman
- 413-02 - What Metaphors Can Illuminate About the Divorce Decision-Making Process: Implications for Research, Theory, and PracticeBy Sarah Allen, Steven Harris, Kelly Roberts, Alan Hawkins
- 413-03 - Model of Optimal RelationshipsBy Kasey Longley, Frank Fincham
Mapping the Contours of Relationship Change and Stability in Divorce Ideation Over Time: A Longitudinal Qualitative Study
Recent scholarship on divorce ideation indicates a need to better understand how the dynamic process of divorce decision-making unfolds over time. This study uses in-depth qualitative interviews at times one and two with participants (n=30/22) who have had recent thoughts of divorce to explore change and stability in their attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors relating to divorce/reconciliation. Qualitative analysis indicates that continued thinking about divorce is common, the process is dynamic in its fluctuation, and a number of internal and external shifts often catalyze continuously re-thinking the future direction of the marriage. Implications for marriage educators, couple therapists, and researchers are explored.
1. Identify, describe, and compare elements of stability and change in the divorce ideation process at times one and two.2. Identify mechanisms that act as catalysts for change in people's thinking about divorce.3. Discuss implications for educators, therapists, and family researchers.
What Metaphors Can Illuminate About the Divorce Decision-Making Process: Implications for Research, Theory, and Practice
This research uses qualitative analysis of in-depth interviews (n=30) with participants currently thinking about divorce to examine the metaphors they use to describe the divorce decision-making process. Results indicate that metaphors not only elucidate core emotions, processes, and outcomes associated with the process of relationship dissolution/reconciliation, but also provide novel conceptualizations that challenge existing root marriage metaphors and the broader cultural meanings of love and marriage they represent. Educators and therapists could utilize these novel metaphors to help normalize, empathize, reframe, discover, and provide direction for their clients who are questioning the future of their marriage.
1. To identify, describe, and analyze the types of metaphors individuals thinking about divorce use when talking about their decision-making process.2. To describe links to the existing literature on the root metaphors of marriage and identify ways in which these divorce decision-making metaphors challenge the cultural narrative on love and marriage.3. To discuss implications for family researchers, educators, and therapists.
Model of Optimal Relationships
Relationship science typically focuses on the negative. Emerging research on positive relationship processes is vital to better understanding relationships. However, specific models of optimal relationships are almost non-existent except for a general model of flourishing relationships proposed by Fincham and Beach (2010) that has room to be improved upon. Well-developed models of successful aging have a similarly positive focus as the flourishing relationships model, but they also provide a route to recovery through resources for those who are ailing. This paper pulls from relevant successful aging models to propose the addition of a third dimension to Fincham and Beach’s model.
To explore literature related to a positive relationship orientation.
To evaluate current models of optimal relationships.
To revise and expand theory on optimal relationships.