The Emerging Self in Psychotherapy with Adults

Chapter 03 - Intimate Relationships and the Emerging Self in Adulthood

Author(s): Richard A. Mackey

Pp: 50-65 (16)

DOI: 10.2174/978160805027710901010050

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


The discussion of the centrality of psychological intimacy in meaningful adult relationships to the emergence of a sense of self in adulthood is based on our research into the meaning of psychological intimacy to 216 partners in 108 heterosexual and same sex relationships that had lasted for an average of 30 years. This study is also the basis of chapter 6 on therapy with couples. Factors that had a significant role in shaping the quality of psychological intimacy were the absence of major conflict, a confrontive conflict management style of one’s partner, a sense of fairness about the relationship and the expression of physical affection between partners. These qualities are invaluable resources for development of the self during the adult years.

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