Two personalities, one relationship: both partners' personality traits shape the quality of their relationship.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

This research tested 6 models of the independent and interactive effects of stable personality traits on each partner's reports of relationship satisfaction and quality. Both members of 360 couples (N = 720) completed the Multidimensional Personality Questionnaire and were interviewed about their relationship. Findings show that a woman's relationship happiness is predicted by her partner's low Negative Emotionality, high Positive Emotionality, and high Constraint, whereas a man's relationship happiness is predicted only by his partner's low Negative Emotionality. Findings also show evidence of additive but not interactive effects: Each partner's personality contributed independently to relationship outcomes but not in a synergistic way. These results are discussed in relation to models that seek to integrate research on individual differences in personality traits with research on interpersonal processes in intimate relationships.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Robins, RW; Caspi, A; Moffitt, TE

Published Date

  • August 2000

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 79 / 2

Start / End Page

  • 251 - 259

PubMed ID

  • 10948978

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1939-1315

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0022-3514

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1037//0022-3514.79.2.251


  • eng