Guided by the Stages of Change (SOC) model, we explored relationship-repair behaviors among those thinking about divorce, employing a recent national longitudinal survey of married individuals (N = 745). Person-centered analyses explored whether there were distinct typologies of relationship-repair behaviors. We found four distinct classes: Intense Seekers (6%), who engaged at high levels of all kinds of repair behaviors, including professional services; Moderate-fading Seekers (14%), who engaged in moderate levels of various repair behaviors, including professional services, but did not sustain that behavior over a year; and Minimal-private Seekers (42%) and Private-sustained Seekers (38%), who eschewed professional services and engaged in low-to-moderate personal and private repair behaviors. We discuss possible applications of the SOC model to the divorce decision-making process and conclude with implications for practice, including the need to allocate greater attention to personal and self-help interventions that match the way most people try to repair their relationships.
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2021 American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy
- Relationship-repair behavior
- divorce ideation
- latent class analysis
- national survey
- stages of change