Self-control and Relationships

Johanna Shapiro, Deane Shapiro

Objections to pathology-based theories of human nature have led to efforts to develop views of positive personal health. In this article we posit the need for interpersonal intimacy as one context for health and suggest that there is a similar need for positive concepts of relationships. In an effort to address this need, a control model of psychological health is applied to relationships at different developmental stages, culminating in a vision of exceptional relationship health. A case example is also included, illustrating the clinical usefulness of conceptualizing relationship along the dimensions of assertive and yielding forms of control.

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