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Sex Roles

, Volume 57, Issue 7–8, pp 483–495 | Cite as

Associations Among Aspects of Interpersonal Power and Relationship Functioning in Adolescent Romantic Couples

  • Charles G. Bentley
  • Renee V. GalliherEmail author
  • Tamara J. Ferguson
Original Article

Abstract

This study used a multidimensional assessment of interpersonal power to examine associations between indices of relationship power and relationship functioning in 92 adolescent romantic couples recruited from rural communities in the Rocky Mountain region of the USA. Significant differences emerged between girlfriends and boyfriends in their reports of decision making authority, perceptions of humiliating behaviors by the partner, and ratings of themselves giving-in to their partners in a videotaped interaction task. In addition, indices of interpersonal power were associated with dating aggression and relationship satisfaction for both girlfriends and boyfriends, although gender differences emerged in the patterns of association between power and outcomes. Results are discussed in light of current developmental, feminist, and social psychological theories of interpersonal power in romantic relationships.

Keywords

Adolescent romantic relationships Interpersonal power Relationship functioning 

Notes

Acknowledgments

Portions of this manuscript were presented at the biennial meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development, Atlanta, GA. This research was supported by the National Institute of Mental Health’s B/START Program (grant number R03 MN064689-01A1) and by a Utah State University New Faculty Grant to Renee V. Galliher. Address correspondence to Renee V. Galliher, Ph.D., Dept. of Psychology, 2810 Old Main Hill, Logan, UT 84322.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Charles G. Bentley
    • 1
  • Renee V. Galliher
    • 1
    Email author
  • Tamara J. Ferguson
    • 1
  1. 1.PsychologyUtah State UniversityLoganUSA

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