Relating Difficulty: The Processes of Constructing and Managing Difficult Interaction

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Dan Charles Kirkpatrick, Steve Duck, Megan K. Foley
Psychology Press, 2006 - Psychology - 249 pages
Relating Difficulty offers insight into the nature of difficulty in relationships across a broad range of human experience. Whether dealing with in-laws or ex-spouses, long-distance relationships or power and status in the workplace, difficulty is an all too common feature of daily life. Relating Difficulty brings the academic understanding of relational processes to the everyday problems people face at home and at work.

These essays represent a groundbreaking collection of the multidisciplinary conceptual and empirical work that currently exists on the topic. Along with issues such as chronic illness and money problems, contributors investigate contexts of relational difficulty ranging from everyday gossip, the workplace and shyness to more dangerous sexual “hookups” and partner abuse.

Drawing on evidence presented in the volume, editors D. Charles Kirkpatrick, Steve Duck, and Megan K. Foley explain how relational problems do not emerge solely from individuals or even from the relationship itself. Instead, they arise from triangles of connection and negotiation between relational partners, contexts, and outsiders. The volume challenges the simple notion that relating difficulty is just about problems with "difficult people" and offers some genuinely novel insights into a familiar everyday experience.

This exceptional volume is essential reading for practitioners, researchers and students of relationships across a wide range of disciplines as well as anyone wanting greater understanding of relational functioning in everyday life and at work.

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Some Conceptual Problems With Problematic Relationships and Difficulties With Difficult People
Formation Is Just the Begining
A Multisite Model of Intimate Terrorism
Chapter 4 Leadership as the Management of Power in Relationships at Work
Chapter 5 Money and Relationship Difficulties
Chapter 6 The Difficulties of Inlaw Relationships
Chapter 7 The Trouble With Distance
The Myths and Realities of the Hookup Experience
Chapter 9 Gossip and Network Relationships
Overcoming the Challenges of Absence
Relationship Adaptation and Chronic Health Problems
Chapter 12 Relating Difficulty in a Triangular World
Author Index
Subject Index

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