Relational Communication and Understanding in Conversations About Hurtful Events Between Parents and Adolescents

McLaren, Rachel M.; Pederson, Joshua R.
February 2014
Journal of Communication;Feb2014, Vol. 64 Issue 1, p145
Academic Journal
This article examines how the severity of a hurtful event and discrepancies in perceptions of relational communication affect perceived understanding and empathic accuracy (EA) in parent-adolescent discussions about a hurtful event in their relationship. Results from a dyadic interaction study showed that the severity of the hurtful event was negatively associated with perceived understanding. Furthermore, discrepancies in perceptions of disaffiliation behaviors during a conversation about a child's hurtful event were also negatively associated with perceived understanding. Discrepancy in perceptions of adolescent's dominance corresponded negatively with parents' perceived understanding when discussing the child's hurtful event. There were no significant associations with EA. The implications for work on hurtful events, understanding, and relational framing theory are discussed.


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