Levinger’s ABC’s of Relationships Model

Relationships, similar to people, encounter stages of development. Describe how a person moves through each of the five stages of Levinger’s ABC’s of relationships model. As you write your description, include answers to the following questions: What do you think people look for in the attraction stage? How do people work on building a relationship? What are some positive factors which foster the continuation of a relationship? What steps can a couple take to avoid the deterioration phase?

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The attractions stage is characterized by positive factors such as personality and positive emotions and negative factors such as physical distance and negative emotions. It appears that the main factor in this stage is nearness or propinquity. The building phase is really the “sizing up” phase of relationships. You get to know the person a little better and find out if you are superficially compatible (i.e. attitudinal similarity, mutual positive evaluations, and differences in physical attractiveness). Building relationships can be facilitated by revealing confidential information about yourself so that both partners can get to know each other better. The continuation phase can be fostered through the adaption of trust in the relationship. Trust can be developed through sacrificing and leads to the sharing of even more confidential information about oneself. One of the main steps that a relationship can take in order to avoid the deterioration phase is to be patient. Some couples get out the second they find out that the other partner is not perfect. None of us are perfect. It is important to take the time to hear the other person out about past missteps or problems. The ending phase is, of course, the end to a relationship. 

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Nevid, J.S., Rathus, S.A. (2005). Psychology and the challenges of life: Adjustment in the new millennium. Danvers, M.A.: Wiley.

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