Several theories of close dyadic relationships posit that relationship harmony depends, in part, on each partner maintaining an appropriate balance between proximity and autonomy. Here we describe a qualitative cross-cultural study of 278 adults from four cultural groups, Israeli Jews, Israeli Arabs, East Indian Hindus, and Americans, examining the reported behavioral expressions and subjective experiences of intrusiveness (a core manifestation of autonomy-proximity imbalance) within romantic relationships. Participants were asked to give examples of intrusive behavior in romantic relationships and then to recall a particular personal experience of intrusiveness and describe their thoughts, feelings, and actions that occurred during this experience. Content analysis revealed both universal themes and cross-cultural differences, and most of the latter were related to cultural values.
- Relational transgressions
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Social Psychology
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Sociology and Political Science