Relationship Expectations, Behavior Interactions and Commitment: A Dyadic Study Among Dual-Earner Couples

Tal Harel, Meni Koslowsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Previous researchers have analyzed the links between relationship expectations and commitment in cohabiting and married couples. The present study examines a dyadic model where couple’s reported behavior interactions (RBI) are suggested as potential mediators and Work-Family Conflict (WFC) as a moderator. The association among these variables was tested by recruiting 111 (N = 222) dual-earner couples to complete questionnaires. To examine the dyadic model, we used the Actor-Partner Interdependence Model on the hypothesized model. The results showed that actor’s RBI was seen as a significant mediator of the associations between relationship expectations and both partner’s commitment. The partner’s affective behavior interactions emerged as a significant mediator between the actor’s expectations-actor’s commitment link but not with the partner’s commitment. In addition, actor’s WFC significantly moderated the effect of partner’s RBI on their commitment. These findings extended our knowledge of possible factors that play a role in promoting relationship commitment among dual-earners couples in long-term relationships. Through the integration of the Investment Model this study illuminates the pathways by which relationship expectations affect commitment via RBI of married and cohabiting couples. Furthermore, the study elucidates the behavioral component of cohabiting couples in long-term relationships from a dyadic perspective. From a practical perspective, clinicians and counselors working with couples experiencing relational difficulties, may want to inquire as to their clients’ relationship expectations and behavior interactions for better understanding commitment among couples.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2834-2855
Number of pages22
JournalPsychological Reports
Issue number6
Early online date2 May 2022
StatePublished - Dec 2023

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  • Work-family conflict
  • dual-earners couples
  • relational behavior interactions
  • relationship commitment


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