Week 7: Betrayal, Trust & Forgiveness Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Week 7: Betrayal, Trust & Forgiveness Deck (21)
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Betrayals and breaking relationship rules

- betrayal is violated expectations
- perceptions of betrayal differ, depending on the kind of relationship and relevant relationship 'rules'
- may involve taboo trade-offs e.g. Money for love


Acts of betrayal

- Infidelity: underlies 25-50% of divorces in Western countries
- 4 types
• accidental
• romantic
• marital arrangement
• philandering


Consequences of infidelity

- damaged self-esteem, self-confidence, sexual confidence
- feelings of abandonment
- attacks on sense of belonging
- "post-traumatic shock"


Deception and lies

Frequent feature of close relationships, despite partners truth bias
- more than 70% of respondents has lied to partners
Continuum of deception
- omission to outright lies
- degrees of evasion, exaggeration


Reasons for deception

Predominantly focused on avoiding hurting partner
Problem: abuse of power, humiliation


Discovering betrayal

- Accident vs looked for
- Betrayal cues (Shackelford & Buss, 1997)
• partner being angry/critical and acting guilty/anxious
• unaccountable increase/decrease in attention and sexual interest
• any change to normal routine
- Confession


Reacting to betrayal

- pain and distress
- cognitive searching: attributions
- jealousy: anger, anxiety and sadness


Accounting for betrayal

4 types
- mitigating (sincere, sorry)
- excuses, extenuating circumstances
- defensive, justifications
- aggravating - denials, no responsibility
Preferred accounts
- victims prefer mitigating than aggravating accounts
- offenders believe victims will react more favorably to mitigating this aggravating accounts
- the role of apology: redressed power imbalance but must be sincere to be effective


Betrayals, guilt and remorse

- essential for forgiveness to occur
- regarded as sign of caring
- motivates relationship repair
- serve as down payment for victim's distress


Revenge and betrayal

- "the infliction of harm in return for perceived wrong"
• helps even the score
• encourages tit for tat cycles
- different perceptions of betrayer as betrayed
- adaptive functions of revenge
• can restore self-esteem, power balance and motivate behaviour change


Forgiveness research

- accommodation (Rusbult et al., 1991)
• linked to commitment and investment in relationship
• commitment promotes forgiveness
- may also be motivated by empathic distress


Fitness (2001) study on forgiveness

- respondents recalled self or partner-caused, forgiven or in-forgiven offences
- reported offences: betrayals, violations of relationship rules
- differences in self vs partner perspectives (self-more excusing)!


Forgiven vs unforgiven

- offence repetition vs one-off
- cheater detection mechanism
- emphasis in forgiven accounts on guilt and remorse
- emphasis in un-forgiven accounts on retaliation, exit behaviors and abuse


Not forgiving a sorry partner

- offence just "broke the rules"
- betrayal severity (80%): how could someone who loved me do such a thing?
- repentant but un-forgiven self-offenders and painfulness of offence had made forgiveness impossible


Forgiving a 'not sorry' partner

- extenuating circumstances
- passage of time
- sake of relationship
- love


Unrepentant self-offenders

Explanation they were forgiven because:
- of extenuating circumstances
- partners loved them
- might unrepentant offenders misinterpret reasons for partners forgiveness
- possibly may assume permission to re-offend, based in assumption of unconditional love


Punishment - betrayal

Forgiven offences
- reminders of offences (& teasing)
Un-forgiven offences
- abuse, denunciation, destruction of possessions, abandonment
Motivated by need to
communicate hurt, regain power, deterrence
Chilli sauce study
- participants in experimental condition gave sig more hot sauce to partners than participants in control group
- some participants took delight
- women punished more than men
- degree of punishment was moderated by relationship happiness


Problem with punishment

Forgiving should mean forgetting
- statute of limitations on punishment
Why not forgive?
- might exonerate offender
- lose power
Problem: offender becomes victim


Consequences of betrayal

- Exit?
- voice, loyalty, neglect
- repairing trust - very difficult
- trust requires predictability, dependability, faith - can it be completely restored?
- high vs low trust individuals


Repairing relationships following betrayal

- reformulation (change the rules)
- prevention (avoid conflict areas)
- minimization (no big deal)
- justification (focus on positives)


Individual differences in reaction to betrayal

- interpersonal betrayal scale
- attachment styles
- rejection sensitivity
- self-esteem