An Examination of Relational Sacrifices: Associations with Daily Commitment and Satisfaction and Tripartite Commitment Experiences
AuthorCorkery, Shannon Alicia
AdvisorCurran, Melissa A.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractIn this dissertation, I focus on associations between relational sacrifices and commitment (e.g., daily commitment and tripartite dimensions of commitment). This collection of empirically and conceptually related studies are guided by interdependence and commitment theories. First, in Paper 1, actor-partner interdependence models (APIMs) are used to examine individuals' and partners' self-reported perceptions of relational sacrifices in association with actors' daily relational satisfaction and commitment. Here, actor and partner reports of frequency, ease and partner awareness of sacrifices were independent variables and daily satisfaction and commitment were dependent variables. For the sample of unmarried, expectant cohabitors (N = 140 individuals; 70 couples), higher perceived ease of daily sacrifices by both actors and partners was associated with individuals' higher daily satisfaction and higher daily commitment. Relational sacrifices are again independent variables for papers 2 and 3, but tripartite dimensions of commitment (i.e., personal, moral and structural commitment) are specified as dependent variables. In paper 2, data from a subset of the sample of unmarried, expectant cohabitors from Paper 1 who completed qualitative interviews about their commitment (N = 82; 41 couples) are used. Here, associations between sacrifices and commitment were primarily patterned around moral commitment. Specifically, individuals' reports of more frequent and less easy sacrifices, and partners' reports of higher perceived partner awareness of sacrifice, were associated with individuals' higher moral commitment. In contrast, partners' reports of more frequent sacrifices were associated with individuals' lower moral commitment. Beyond moral commitment, individuals' reports of higher perceived partner awareness of sacrifice were associated with their own higher structural commitment, but no significant associations were found with personal commitment. In Paper 3, associations between frequency of and satisfaction with relational sacrifices and tripartite commitment dimensions are examined in a sample of 731 individuals currently involved in romantic relationships. Unlike the sample from Papers 1 and 2 (unmarried, expectant cohabitors), the sample here consisted of individuals across varied relationships statuses (e.g., casual dating, serious dating, married). With this broader range of relationships represented, more frequent sacrifices were associated with higher structural and moral commitment, whereas higher satisfaction with sacrifices was associated with higher personal commitment. Despite a lack of patterned results across this collection of studies, the variation of findings across the samples suggests that the relationship between sacrifices and commitment may be different for different populations. For instance, results from papers 1 suggest that unmarried, expectant cohabitors may be wise to focus on making easier sacrifices given associations with more positive daily satisfaction and commitment. Moreover, results from paper 2 suggest that personal commitment may not be salient for these individuals as patterned findings were specific to the relationship between sacrifices and (mostly) moral commitment. Nevertheless, with a broader population represented (paper 3), associations were found across tripartite commitment dimensions. Thus although sacrifices may not have been relevant to personal commitment for unmarried, expectant cohabitors, it is for others. Taken together, these studies demonstrate the diverse ways in which individuals experience sacrifices relative to daily experiences, and various forms, of commitment. This knowledge can be used to inform individuals how they may choose to function in relationships, practitioners how they may design relational intervention and improvement strategies, and researchers how to apply theory and approach studying commitment across diverse populations.
Degree ProgramGraduate College
Family & Consumer Sciences