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Relationship Analysis - Research Paper Example

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Relationship Analysis Paper Discussing a Relationship via Social Exchange and Equity Theories Introduction Since the beginning of human society great thinkers, writers, philosophers, sociologists, psychologists, and anthropologists have dedicated themselves to understanding why people think, feel, and behave as they do…
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Download file to see previous pages Although these numerable theories are not a “how to” manual, but a means of getting deeper understanding into the natures of relationships between human beings. Three of these theories, offer interesting approaches as to how to understand romantic couplings and how and why people participate in interpersonal relationships. Firstly, Social Exchange Theory, as well as, two of the conceptual theories that fall under the umbrella of Social Exchange Theory, Equity Theory and Interdependence Theory. History Social Exchange Theory became popularized in the 1960s and 1970s. It works under the principle that all of human relationship behaviors are based on an exchange process. Through this they each can work to maximize rewards and avoids or minimize costs. This mental, and unconscious, a process allow the partners to measure whether their time, energy, money, and efforts balance with what they receive (Cherry, 2013). This theory has been influenced and enhanced by behavioral psychology, which explains that human being will repeat the behaviors that have resulted with rewards in the past. As well, as supported by Utilitarian logic, that if one receives more than the other, one will inevitably take advantage of the other (Plunkett, 2013). Simply meaning that one partner in a relationship becomes the primary giver and the other the primary receiver. Once these behaviors become habitual it will likely, not change. Equity Theory is based on the belief that people are innately drawn or desire to be treated well and valued fairly within the relationships they participate. Now, this does not necessarily mean that each partner will contribute in the same ways to the relationship, but as long as the parties involved find the relationship agreeable the a sense of balance, fairness, and equality that people wish. Unfortunately, we all do not necessarily agree on the definition of fairness is. This is when perceived imbalance can occur. When one member is not receiving positive reinforcements they may abandon the relationship. In turn, it is, also, possible for a partner who feels that the other gives much more than they do they may feel distress or guilt about this imbalance, even when that imbalance is in their favor (Deshmukh, 2011). “…Interdependence exists when the accomplishment of each individual’s goals is affected by the actions of others” (qtd. in Johnson & Johnson, 2013). In other words the personal successes and failures of each partner can be intertwined with one another. The theory explains that there are two types of Interdependence, positive, or cooperative, and negative, or competitive. Positive and cooperative interdependence is reflected in relationship where both partners feel that they cannot reach their goals without their partner, also, achieving their goals. Many might consider that the exact example of a committed, dedicated and equal relationship. The successes and failure are intertwined. Negative interdependence occurs when the partners in a relationship are competitive. One’s success can only be achieved by sacrificing the best interests of the other (Johnson & Johnson, 2013). Interestingly enough, if one partner is seeking positive interdependen ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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