Hypothesis Forming Activity w Essay

Submitted By cyork421
Words: 690
Pages: 3

Hypothesis Worksheet

For question 1 and 2 from:
Eastwick, P. W. & Finkel, E. J. (2008). The attachment system in fledging relationships: An activating role for attachment anxiety. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 95, 628-647.

The Current Research

We have argued that (a) attachment concerns may be salient in relationships that are still developing and (b) attachment anxiety is not only a dispositional orientation but also a state-like, normative, functional experience in established romantic relationships. Given these postulates, it is possible that the state-like experience of attachment anxiety might also have functional implications for developing romantic relationships. Just as attachment anxiety motivates approach and other attachment behaviors in established romantic relationships (and in infancy), might it inspire similar behaviors in romantic relationships that are not full-fledged attachment relationships?

In the present set of four studies, we tested this empirical question by examining the role of PSAnx within fledgling romantic relationships. We advanced two hypotheses. The first was that PSAnx would be especially pronounced in desired relationships in comparison with established relationships (Studies 1 and 3). The very early stages of potential romantic relationships are often characterized by significant uncertainty, as individuals struggle to make sense of a desired partner's behavior toward the self and sift for evidence of reciprocation (Tennov, 1979). This uncertainty should be associated with those elevated feelings of worry and a desire for reassurance that are central to the experience of attachment anxiety. Presumably, PSAnx decreases for most individuals when a relationship becomes “official,” an event that connotes reciprocation.

For the second hypothesis, we drew from Bowlby (1959, 1969/1982, 1973) and suggested that the experience of PSAnx signals the activation of the attachment behavioral system. Therefore, we sought correlational and experimental evidence that PSAnx predicts attachment-relevant outcomes in desired relationships (Studies 2–4). These outcomes include emotions that promote romantic bonding, such as passionate love (Hatfield & Sprecher, 1986; Hazan & Diamond, 2000), as well as the four functions of attachment discussed above (proximity seeking, separation distress, safe haven, and secure base). As in the Strange Situation, we hypothesized that proximity seeking and other approach behaviors would be especially promising as dependent variables, but we were open to the possibility that the more “advanced” safe-haven and secure-base functions would also be predicted by partner-specific attachment anxiety. Finally, to make an especially forceful case that attachment anxiety is an important motivator in fledgling romantic relationships, it is essential to demonstrate that anxiety has its effects above and beyond the effect of sexual desire, which is certainly a powerful motivator of romantic pursuit in its own right.

Study 1

Even securely attached individuals experience