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Dating Relationships and the Demand/Withdraw Pattern of Communication

Abstract

This study examines whether afemale-demand/male-withdraw pattern occurs in datingrelationships and whether this response increases duringdiscussions of difficult topics. One hundred and eightindividuals (women = 60, men = 48) currently in a datingrelationship completed the Communication PatternsQuestionnaire, Short Form (CPQSF) regarding either adifficult or nondifficult discussion. The racialcomposition of the undergraduate student population at thetime the study was conducted was 68.8% Caucasian, 8.9%Hispanic, 8.9% International, 6.0% African American,5.6% Asian American, and 1.8% Native American (data on socioeconomic status were unavailable).Results show that dating couples do employ apredominantly female-demand/male-withdraw pattern, whichincreases in response to difficult discussions. However, this study also found that many dating couplesemployed male-demand/female-withdraw or equaldemand/withdraw patterns. Post hoc tests also showedthat couples exhibiting eitherfemale-demand/male-withdraw or male-demand/female-withdraw patterns weremore ingrained in specific negative behavior patterns,employed more demand/withdraw behaviors, and exhibitedless positive behaviors than couples with an equal demand/withdraw pattern.

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Vogel, D.L., Wester, S.R. & Heesacker, M. Dating Relationships and the Demand/Withdraw Pattern of Communication. Sex Roles 41, 297–306 (1999). https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1018862414176

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Keywords

  • Socioeconomic Status
  • Social Psychology
  • Undergraduate Student
  • Behavior Pattern
  • Student Population