No Longer “Absent When the Picture Was Taken”: Putting Relationships Into Relational Research

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Two concepts form the basis of this study: a collaborative research design and a qualitative analysis of data. Participants and investigators were partners in the study, with the expectation that all would benefit from the joint effort. A qualitative analysis of the data was employed to arrive at a process-oriented, contextualized, dynamic perspective on relationships. Females, randomly paired into dyads, met for 1 hour per week for 9 weeks, individually writing commentaries of their experiences talking together and building relationships. The investigators' analyses focus on similarities-differences, self-disclosure, emotion, and intimacy, illustrating the complexities of relationship formation that emerge when examining the data with a multidimensional lens.

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