Relational qualities as factors in mate selection decisions

Bretscher F., & Bergner, R.M. / Published 1992 / Article

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Citation: Bretscher, F., & Bergner, R.M. (1992). On the Relational Qualities as Factors in Mate Selection Decisions. In M.K. Roberts, & R.M. Bergner, (Eds.). Clinical Topics: Contributions to the Conceptualization and Treatment of Adolescent-Family Problems, Bulimia, Chronic Mental Illness, and Mania. Advances in Descriptive Psychology, Vol. 6 (pp. 107-123). Ann Arbor, MI: Descriptive Psychology Press.

Abstract: The range of relationship factors that enter into persons' mate selection decisions has been insufficiently articulated. Similarity, rewardingness, and
complementarity have been examined amply, while other factors have been ignored. In this research, 12 relationship factors, those articulated in Davis and Todd's (1982) analysis of romantic love, are examined as considerations in mate selection decisions. These include mutual advocacy, enjoyment, intimacy, understanding, exclusiveness, trust, acceptance, respect, authenticity, fascination, sexual desire, and giving the
utmost. Two basic findings were obtained. First, all but one of the Davis and Todd factors were rated by subjects as very important to them in considering prospective mates, and as more important than similarity, complementarity, and rewardingness. Second, discriminant function analysis revealed that five of the Davis and Todd
factors successfully discriminated which relationships subjects ultimately chose and which they terminated; only similarity among the traditional variables did so.