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in intimate relationships, the ability to influence one’s partner to get what one wants.
father-son, mother-daughter, or mother-son.
Power within the family can be marital power, parental power, offspring power, sibling power, or kinship power. There can also be combinations of power units,give examples:
Most people want to feel that they have some control over their own life- that they have the power to change, influence, or direct what happens to them personally.
Without some personal power, it’s difficult to survive as an independent individual
Often people exert power because that is what they feel they are supposed to do, and they want to avoid criticism for not fulfilling expectations
power that is bestowed by society on men and women as their right according to social prescription
Family of Origin Influences
serves as the first power base from which the child learns to function
Certain types of applications, such as physical violence and abuse, may be passed from generation to generation. Even techniques of control, such as silence, are learned behavior.
People who have deep-seated feelings of insecurity and inferiority may try to hide them or to compensate for them by becoming autocratic and dictatorial
Aggression against an attachment figure at any age is a control strategy for regaining either emotional or physical closeness to a person when the bond with that person is perceived to be endangered.
Social Control theory
Using power (or violence) as a response to an upsetting behavior by others serves three functions:
A means to manage conflict in relationships
An expression of grievances
A form of social control
The patriarchal hierarchy in families allows the use of male-female violence as a way of maintaining male power within the marriage
Consistent with this theory, rates of spousal abuse are lower in societies in which women have economic power within the marriage than in those in which women have little or no economic power
Sources of Power
Various sources have been identified, including cultural norms, gender norms, economic resources, education and knowledge, personality differences, communication ability, emotional factors, physical stature and strength, and life circumstances.
Culture may instruct families on appropriate and acceptable modes of conduct but the way in which families interpret and incorporate those modes into their lives varies widely.
African American marriages tend to be ______ egalitarian than White marriages, with middle class Black families _____ egalitarian than middle class White families
develop and as interest spheres and power domains overlap, more family issues become subject to negotiation and compromise.
The traditional respondents unanimously thought that women prefer to stay at home cooking, cleaning and caring for the children and that men should be in the workforce and should discipline the children.
Girls are less likely than boys to gain access to scarce resources in a play situation in the absence of adults.
According to resource theory, those who control valued resources needed by other family members hold power over them
Women who are not earning money for the family may not have equal power if their spouses don’t allow it or they don’t demand it. When the woman is gainfully employed, she usually gains more power in decision making in the family.
power that is given because a person is considered superior in knowledge of a particular subject
power acquired because of extensive knowledge of a specific area
Theory of primary interest and presumed competence:
the theory that the person who is most interested in, most involved with, and best qualified to make a particular choice will be more likely to do so.
Males seem to take ____ active control over conversation than do females
the ability to bestow or withhold affection
Some spouses use sex as a source of power
Love or sex must be valued before it can become a power source. When love dies, so does power
the threat of physical force or other types of punishment to force compliance.
egalitarian power pattern,
power is distributed equally between the partners.
is associated with the highest level of reported marital satisfaction
anarchic power pattern
both partners have power and seek to exercise it in a random manner, disregarding all rules in governing the total family
_of dissatisfaction have been found in female dominant relationships
The high power woman may more frequently resort to demanding, negative communication, which may lead to marital dissatisfaction.
exhibit more negative behavior than either male or female dominant couples. when faced with a decision, there is neither an expressed norm nor an implicit understanding of who will exercise control
the power to make the important decisions that determine family lifestyle
power that sets decisions in motion
arise when the implementing spouse tries to modify the guidelines and boundaries established by the orchestrating spouse
Discussing, explaining, asking, or telling
Bargaining or negotiating,
the process by which two parties decide what each will give and receive in arriving at a decision
The process involves quid pro quo, which means, bargaining.
Deceiving, lying, or outwitting
A way of blaming someone else for every bad thing that happens
The goal is to make the other person feel responsible and guilty so that the controller doesn’t have to accept the blame
When the husband attempts to drive his wife insane by turning down the gaslights and then telling her she’s imagining things when she says they are growing dimmer
One partner denies the truth of what the other is saying, sarcastically criticizes the other for his or her feelings or opinions, or turns things around to make the other partner feel guilty for having any doubts
is maximized when couples achieve a balance of power that is acceptable to both partners.
is a significant factor in creating intimacy
involves both content and process
is what is communicated
is the means by which feelings, attitudes, facts, beliefs, and ideas are transmitted between people
posture, facial expression, still or tense muscles, blushing, panting, tears, sweating, shivering, increased pulse rate, thumping heart, and other bodily reactions that convey feelings and reactions
Both verbal and nonverbal communication are strongly associated with good marital adjustment
This refers to words that soothe; that give recognition, acceptance, and reassurance; and that fulfill emotional needs.
Sometimes the verbal and nonverbal messages are contradictory
Double blind communication:
conflicting messages sent when verbal messages and body language don’t agree
If employment separates couples frequently or for long periods of time, the tendency is for communication to break down, with a resultant loss of intimacy.
When couples live together with others, lack of privacy becomes a major factor in making intimate communication more difficult
The closeness reported during pregnancy then declines, resulting in the increased dissatisfaction that some women feel after childbirth.
Fear of rejection, ridicule, failure, or alienation and lack of trust between two people
Partners will not share experiences that are unrewarding, threatening, or painful if they are not sure of an empathetic reply.
Females use routine openness in communication more frequently than men
Men express more anger and contempt in marital interactions than do women, who express more sadness and fear.
tend to perceive social relations in a hierarchical fashion, employing conversational styles that are competitive and fact oriented.
perceive social relations as egalitarian and often use conversation as a means of sharing feelings and promoting intimacy
People cant really get to know each other unless they are willing to talk about themselves
High revealers are more prone to disclose intimate facets of their personalities and to do so earlier in their relationships than are low revealers.
response to the message another has sent and disclosure of one’s own feelings and ideas
of a partner’s different traits does not mean giving in due to fear or intimidation, but rather being strongly committed to a more fulfilling and satisfying relationship.
Four different criteria of a successful marriage
Approximation of ideals
Fulfillment of needs
Many people would say that the marriage that lasts is more successful than the one that is broken
Approximation of Ideals
One problem with this way of assessing the success of a marriage is that some people have very unrealistic expectations in the first place.
for love, affection, approval and fulfillment
for friendship, companionship, and new experiences
for both physical and psychological sexual fulfillment
First, it is helpful if need fulfillment is mutual
Second, mutual need fulfillment is most possible if needs fall within the limits of realistic expectations
includes marital quality, marital adjustments, and marital happiness.
Few marriages live up to all expectations and fulfill all needs all the time; successful strive for improvement
Negative affect reciprocity
a consistent characteristic of distressed couples
In an unhappy marriage, there is a greater probability that the listener will respond only to the irritation in the message
pattern is another characteristic of unhappy marriages
Usually the woman who raises and pursues the issues and the man who attempts to avoid the discussion and tends to withdraw.
Research suggests that in unhappy marriages with high negative affect, men withdraw emotionally and women do not.
Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse”
criticism; defensiveness; contempt; and stonewalling, or listener withdrawal.
Researches found that the ______ placed more importance on sexual intimacy than men did. _____ placed more importance than women on sexual satisfaction, sexual communication, positive attitudes toward sex, and physical contact.
Partners who are able to meet those needs are usually emotionally secure people themselves. They do not have to criticize each other or put each other down to build themselves up.
unconditional approval of another person
Unconditional positive regard
acceptance of another person as he or she is
Research indicates that partners who share interests, who do things together, and who share some of the same friends and social groups desire more satisfaction from their relationship than do partners who are not mutually involved
In a study, it was found that for women, the vital ingredient in improving sex, romance, and passion in marriage was to increase the sense of ______
For men, the key to improving sex, romance, and passion was found to be conflict reduction; arguing activated men’s _______ response and left them feeling threatened and not eager for sex.
married couples turn to their faith for moral guidance in making decisions and dealing with conflict.
Intention to persist
Cognitive orientation to being in the relationship for the long term
Commitment is regarded as having three components:
Some people like a lot of physical contact; others are satisfied with an occasional kiss
Some people are very uninhibited n sexual expression and desire playful sex; others are restrained
persons who are unhappy in their marriage report high levels of _____.
personal value system that emphasizes that the way to find happiness is through self-gratification and narcissism.
Phase 1: Perception
Phase 2: Experiencing
Phase 3: Awareness
Phase 4: Labeling
Phase 5: Stating
Honesty, Trust, and Fidelity:
are important ingredients in contemporary successful marriages
Sincerity, faithfulness, and trust are the cement that bind people together.
Adaptability, Flexibility, and Tolerance:
Recognize that people differ in their attitudes, values, habits, though processes, and ways of doing things. Their own preferences are not necessarily the only viable ones, so they accept individual and group differences.
such as family of origin, characteristics of individual, social connections, and couple interactional processes are prominent in influencing later marital quality, either directly or indirectly.
A ________ family of origin experience has more impact on a man’s marital satisfaction than does the man’s own family of origin experience.
Parental divorce, parental mental illness, and family dysfunction have a negative influence on the children’s marital success.
Going to school
Starting a career
Being at the top/bottom of your career
Death of parents/siblings
Satisfaction of marriage and family life effects your health, friendships, and your overall well being
the adaptable high satisfaction of marriage
comfortable but not emotionally close; your spouse probably isn’t your best friend but there is no conflict
mostly negative emotions; you are stable in your marriage, you are not getting/talking about getting a divorce; not a lot of love
the gradual continuous decline of satisfaction
increasing in satisfaction over the years; every year gets a little better; every year they tackle a new milestone
high satisfaction in early marriage, decreases in middle years of marriage, then increases again after children leave
Most common problem in the early years of marriage, in the middle years of marriage, in the later years of marriage and leading reason for divorce
Communication and sex
Sex, communication, relatives, recreation
the extent to which participation in one domain impacts participation in another domain.
Job stress affects the parent’s marriage and their relationship with their children and work family conflict leads to both job and life dissatisfaction
with work family stress were four times more likely than those with just family problems to be struck by a first heart attack
When people experience stress on the job, their partner is also likely to experience
can provide added income, social support, increased self-complexity, varied opportunities to experience success, and expanded frame of reference
Striving for partnership
Deriving meaning from work
Maintaining work boundaries
Focusing and producing at work
Prioritizing family fun
Taking pride in dual earnings
Making decisions proactively
Middle class ____ families work an average of 9.4 hours more per week than their white counterparts, and blacks work more hours than whites at every income level.
Upper income _____ families work the most of any group in any economic class, putting in 12.9 hours more per week than white families
Long hours did not relate to spouse’s love, perspective taking, or conflict, but ____ _____ consistently predicted less-positive marital relationships.
Fathers typically become more actively involved caregivers when children move out of infancy
partners place limits on the number of hours they work, reduce expectations for career advancement, decide to have a one-job/one-career marriage, or trade family and job responsibilities over the life course.
Women do the most
which allows pregnant women to take a leave of absence from work to have their babies, is a help for some in eliminating the conflict between having to do work and wanting to stay home and care for the newborn
mothers who remain heavily involved with family responsibilities while also meeting the demands of paid employment
When a mother is not emotionally healthy, the whole family suffers, and in the struggle to do the multitude of tasks well, the overall goal of a healthy family is often sacrificed.
a family in which both spouses are involved in the paid labor force
a specific subtype of the broader category of dual earner families. There are two career-committed individuals, both of whom are trying to fulfill professional and family roles.
housing, transportation, and food.
of the gender pay gap is caused by women’s concentration in lower paying industries and in lower paying jobs within higher paying industries.
the trend toward increasing proportions of women, regardless of ethnicity or age, living in poverty
divided between the rich and everyone else
Economic Policy Institute, concluded that the gap between the rich and the poor was greater than ever at the end of the century and continues to grow
recommends actions that could help to close the gap
Tax-exempt savings programs, expanded earned income credits, a higher minimum wage, increased access to homeownership, and a higher capital gains tax
the generalized capacity for flexible and resourceful adaptation to stressors.
the period between the last child leaving home and the parent’s retirement; also called the “empty-nest years”
today’s generation of young adults that may leave home and return several times
Sometimes the adult child reverts to the role of dependent child, and the parents return to superordinate roles of earlier times.
making that the highest priority – tends to lead to more success for the couple
If you derive meaning from your work to not just get a paycheck. Maintaining work boundaries
Power that is bestowed by society
Example: power the government has, power of the police
those who control the resources have the power
Given to the person who is superior in intelligence and education
Theory of primary interest and presumed competence
The person who is most interested and involved is most qualified to make that decision
Possessed by the person who has superior knowledge in that certain area
Threat of physical punishment – spanking
The anarchy. No agreement
Least happy from all the other power patterns
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