ERIC Number: ED328928
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Aug
Personal Accounts and Autobiographical Memories.
Stillwell, Arlene M.; Baumeister, Roy F.
A primary internal concern of an intimate relationship is that each partner communicates with the other. A breakdown of communication may occur when an occurrence construed as minor or negligible by one partner precipitates a major explosion of anger, rage, and hurt by the other. Both partners may be at fault for allowing a disagreement to reach such a point. In a study on anger, 63 participants furnished two autobiographical accounts, one from the perpetrator's perspective and one from that of the victim. Accumulated grievances were found most often in accounts taken from the perspective of the victim. However, by not showing anger when the perpetrators' objectionable behavior first began to appear, the victims indirectly acknowledged the behavior and allowed it to continue. Perpetrators viewed victims' outbursts as inappropriate responses to single incidents. Communication between partners (often studied in interpersonal courses) is of the utmost importance if a relationship is to continue and thrive. Lines of communication must remain open and clear. One cause of such conflicts is the differing time perspectives of victim and perpetrator. What the victim sees as a response to a history of grievances, the perpetrator views as a sudden, surprising eruption with no provocation. (SG)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Psychological Association (98th, Boston, MA, August 10-14, 1990).