Thursday, July 25, 2013

Promoting Healthy Relationship Development in Teens

The late Erich Fromm had a humorous insight to relationships: “True love is like a pair of socks: you’ve gotta have two and they’ve gotta match.” So goes one of the many philosophies about what it takes to find and maintain lasting love and relationships.

Despite his somewhat casual approach to the subject, Fromm was right—couples who stay together tend to match and be more similar than they are different. It is these similarities and differences that often impact how well two people in a romantic relationship are able to communicate and interact with each other. In addition, each person also brings background influences into the relationship such as family of origin habits and processes. Individual characteristics also exert a certain amount of influence on the couple’s functioning as a whole. These components are further examined below.

Three Kinds of Premarital Predictors
Jeffry Larson and Thomas Holman have conducted the most long-term and specific studies of the premarital predictors of healthy marriages. They have synthesized these premarital predictors into three general areas:
1) background and contextual factors of each person
2) individual traits and behaviors of each person
3) interactional processes— how they effective communicate and resolve conflict.

For more information, download the publication: Promoting Healthy Relationship Development in Teens, Part II: Three Key Qualities to Foster Better Relationships at

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