Duck's Model of Relationship Breakdown

Duck's Model of Relationship Breakdown

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  • Intra-psychic Stage (brooding)
  • You never listen to me.....
  • Dyadic Stage (confrontation)
  • This isn't working, you never act interested in me!!
  • Ugh all you do is complain...
  • One person becomes dissatisfied with the relationship and weighs up the pros and cons, evaluating these against the alternatives. They think about the reasons for their unhappiness, focusing mostly on their partner's shortcoming and start to make plans for the future. 
  • Social Phase (gossiping)
  • The dissatisfaction is now shared with their partner resulting in a series of confrontations where dissatisfactions are aired. This can lead to 2 possible outcomes, the determination to continue breaking up or he desire to repair the relationship.
  • Grave-dressing Stage (moving on)
  • R.I.P. relationship
  • The break-up becomes public. Partners seek support from others outside the relationship. Friends react differently; some provide reassurance, some are judgemental and some push the relationship towards its end by proving new information, At this point, the relationship is unlikely to be repaired as each partner has invested in the breakdown. 
  • I'm not even surprised they broke up, he hit on me last week....
  • I'm so sad they broke up, I loved them together!!
  • This is where the relationship has completely ended. Each partner will seek to create a favourable narrative of the events, justifying to themselves and others why the relationship breakdown was not their fault, thus retaining their social value.
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