Do not hook up long term with someone who maintains a grudge or sustains a feeling of being emotionally wounded. This strikes me as a statement of the obvious. But
MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL (02/10/2011) —People searching for fulfilling and stable romantic relationships should look for a romantic partner who recovers from conflict well. Yes, it turns out that if your romantic partner recoups well after the two of you have a spat, you reap the benefits, according to results of a new study by the University of Minnesota College of Education and Human Development's Institute of Child Development.
The research looks at how people recover or come down after a conflict with their romantic partner, said Jessica Salvatore, the lead researcher in the study "Recovering From Conflict in Romantic Relationships: A Developmental Perspective." The article is set to appear in the journal Psychological Science, and has been released online. Co-authors of the study are university researchers Sally Kuo, Ryan Steele, Jeffry Simpson and W. Andrew Collins.
The Blank Slate is predictably invoked to explain part of the findings. But do well-loved infants go on to recover from relationship fights? Or do babies with loving parents inherit genes that make their own loving feelings dampen their anger after a fight?
Results of the study also show that infant attachment security plays a role in how someone recovers from conflict.
"Having a caregiver who was more in-tune and responsive to your emotional needs as an infant predicts better conflict recovery 20 years later," Salvatore said. This means that if your caregiver is better at regulating your negative emotions as an infant, you tend to do a better job of regulating your own negative emotions in the moments following a conflict as an adult.