Year of Publication

2018

Season of Publication

Fall

Paper Type

Master's Thesis

College

College of Arts and Sciences

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Psychology

NACO controlled Corporate Body

University of North Florida. Department of Psychology

First Advisor

Dr. Christopher Leone

Second Advisor

Dr. Paul Fuglestad

Department Chair

Dr. Lori Lange

College Dean

Dr. George Rainbolt

Abstract

High self-monitors choose as friends skilled activity partners, whereas low self-monitors select friends who are similar in attitude and values. We hypothesized that (a) as self-monitoring increased, individuals would identify the loss of shared interest as the cause for dissolving a former friendship and (b) as self-monitoring decreased, individuals would identify the loss of shared attitudes and values as the cause for dissolving a former friendship. One-hundred sixty one (82 males, 79 females) participants were recruited from MTurk. Participants were prompted with a forced choice measure to identify one of two reasons why a past close friendship dissolved. For one response participants could identify a loss of shared activities, for the other a loss of shared values. Participants then completed the 25-item Self-Monitoring Scale. For exploratory purposes, participants then completed a measure of the strategies they used to terminate that relationship of a best friend. Our results were consistent with our predictions, as self-monitoring appeared to influence the cause of dissolution in former close friendships. Additionally, as self-monitoring tendencies increased, participants were more likely to report using cost escalation, manipulation, distant/mediated communication, and de-escalation as strategies for ending a friendship. Explanations for these findings and suggestions for future research are discussed.

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