Seminars & Events

2 October 2017
15:30 - 17:00
Unnik Building room 201

Seminar: Catrin Finkenauer – Trust and Self-Control in Relationships

Presentation:  Catrin Finkenauer, Professor Interdisciplinary Social Science Utrecht University

Trust and Self-Control in Relationships

Trust is crucial to getting through the myriad interdependent interactions adults and children face every day, from playing to parenting, from communicating to lovemaking. Self-control, the capacity to control impulses, delay gratification, and modulate emotions, plays an integral role in many aspects of relationships. Given its relational importance, I propose that self-control is key to unravelling how trust develops in relationships. Despite its great relational importance, most research has focused on the link between actors’ self-control and actors’ outcomes. Consequently, we know little about dyadic processes of self-control and its relational effects: Is self-control perceived by partners? If yes, how does it affect the relationship and trust? Is self-control important for trust in parent-child relationships? Can self-control play a role in trust repair? In this presentation, I will begin to answer these questions. I will present longitudinal and experimental research that examines the relational role of self-control in relationship maintenance and deterioration. The research was conducted among adults and families. The data I will present highlight the importance of self-control for both partners in the relationship: the partner who exerts self-control as well as the partner who perceives this self-control in the other. I will discuss the implications of these findings for research on relationships and therapeutic interventions (e.g., domestic violence).