An actor-partner interdependence model of irritations in romantic relationships

Jennifer A. Theiss, Leanne K. Knobloch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study examined actor and partner effects of relationship characteristics on people's appraisals of irritations. Dating partners (N = 135 dyads) reported on characteristics of their relationship once per week for 6 weeks. Results of the longitudinal study indicated that the severity of irritations was positively associated with one's own perceptions of relational uncertainty and interference from partners. In addition, a partner's relational uncertainty, severity of irritations, and directness of communication about irritations were positively associated with the severity of an actor's irritations after controlling for the actor's own perceptions of relationship characteristics. Our findings highlight the complex interdependence that exists between partners involved in courtship.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)510-537
Number of pages28
JournalCommunication Research
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2009


  • Conflict
  • Interdependence
  • Irritations
  • Relational turbulence model
  • Relational uncertainty

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Communication
  • Linguistics and Language


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