Irritations in romantic relationships : testing and extending the Revelation-Risk Model as a predictive mechanism for disclosure decisions and relationship power effects




Pett, Rudolph Clarence

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Feelings of irritation often emerge in romantic relationships, but the theoretical mechanisms determining whether individuals reveal or conceal these specific feelings to their romantic partner remain underdeveloped. Using a two-month longitudinal survey design involving 448 participants, the current study tested the Revelation-Risk Model (RRM) as a potential mechanism for predicting individuals’ decisions to reveal or conceal their feelings of irritation. The RRM was also examined in its ability to predict the disclosure strategies individuals anticipated using at Time 1 and actually employed at Time 2. In addition, the original RRM considerations were extended by examining the additive role of relationship power in predicting individuals’ disclosure decisions. Results suggested that the original components of the RRM (i.e., closeness, risk, communication efficacy, willingness to disclose) predict individuals’ decisions to disclose feelings of irritation. Relationship power also emerged as a significant predictor of the risk individuals associated with disclosing their feelings of irritation. The findings are discussed in terms of their contributions to existing research on disclosure, irritations, and power in romantic relationships.


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