Relationship breakups: are they all bad?
This research focused on the link between attributions people make about relationship termination, coping strategies employed post-breakup and possible posttraumatic growth experienced as a result of a breakup. The research also studied the relations between past relationship breakups and current relationship satisfaction, level of respect for partner, and satisfaction with life. The measures used for this study included: a background inventory, the Relationship Breakup Attribution Measure (Tashiro & Frazier, 2003), the Problem Focused Style of Coping Scale (Heppner, Cook, Wright, & Johnson, 1995), the Emotional Approach Coping Scale (Stanton, Kirk, Cameron, & Danoff-Burg, 2000), the Posttraumatic Growth Inventory (Tedeschi & Calhoun, 1996), the Relationship Assessment Scale (S. Hendrick, 1988), the Respect Toward Partner Scale (S. Hendrick & Hendrick, 2006), and the Satisfaction with Life Scale (Diener, Emmons, Larsen, & Griffin, 1985). Correlations, regression analyses, and analysis of variance examined associations among the variables. Significant correlations were found among the variables for the total sample, for men and women separately, and for current dating status. Attributions and some coping strategies were predictive of posttraumatic growth for both men and women. For women, coping by emotional processing was related to life satisfaction, and growth from a prior relationship was related to current partner respect and relationship satisfaction. Respect and relationship satisfaction were positively correlated for both genders. Individuals in a romantic relationship had greater life satisfaction than individuals not in a relationship. Menâ€™s satisfaction with life was significantly impacted by dating status, whereas womenâ€™s satisfaction with life was not. In general, women had higher levels of life satisfaction than men. Clinical implications of the results and future research possibilities are noted.