The affective dynamics of reassurance-seeking in real-time interactions

Published on 2019-09-25T12:08:46Z (GMT) by
<div><p>According to several interpersonal theories of depression, excessive reassurance-seeking is one way depressed individuals may contribute to relationship deterioration, particularly in romantic relationships. The present study is the first behavioral investigation of the hypothesis that reassurance-seeking induces negative affect in interaction partners in real time. This study also investigates potential affective precursors to reassurance-seeking behaviors. A videotaped discussion task completed by 121 women and their male romantic partners was behaviorally coded to assess reassurance-seeking and affect in both members of the couple. Female depression was measured via self-report. Results indicated that the association between female reassurance-seeking and male partner’s subsequent anxiety approached statistical significance, but no other significant relations between reassurance-seeking and partner affect were found. Additionally, female anxious affect positively predicted subsequent reassurance-seeking, and depression symptoms moderated this relation. Unexpectedly, the relation between anxious affect and reassurance-seeking was stronger among women with less severe depression symptoms. Our findings support integrated and revised theories of reassurance-seeking and underscore the need to further investigate reassurance-seeking behavior in real-time interactions.</p></div>

Cite this collection

Lord, Kayla A.; Harkness, Kate L.; Suvak, Michael K.; Stewart, Jeremy G. (2019): The affective dynamics of reassurance-seeking in real-time interactions. SAGE Journals. Collection.