Dealing with loss in the face of disasters and crises: Integrating interpersonal theories of couple adaptation and functioning

Gery C. Karantzas, Judith A. Feeney, Christopher R. Agnew, Andrew Christensen, Carolyn E. Cutrona, Brian D. Doss, Christopher I. Eckhardt, Daniel W. Russell, Jeffry A. Simpson

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the significant and varied losses that couples can experience during times of global and regional disasters and crises. What factors determine how couples navigate their close relationships during times of loss? In this paper, we elaborate and extend on one of the most influential frameworks in relationship science—the Vulnerability Stress Adaptation Model (VSAM, Karney and Bradbury, 1995)—to enhance the model's power to explain relationships during loss-themed disasters/crises. We do so by elaborating on attachment theory and integrating interdependence theory (emphasizing partner similarities and differences). Our elaboration and extension to the VSAM provides a comprehensive framework to guide future research and inform practice and policy in supporting relationships during and beyond loss-themed disasters/crises.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)129-138
Number of pages10
JournalCurrent Opinion in Psychology
Volume43
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2022

Keywords

  • Attachment orientations
  • COVID-19
  • Interdependence theory
  • Loss
  • Partner differences and similarities
  • Romantic relationships
  • Vulnerability stress adaptation model

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)

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