Intimate Relationships across the Lifespan

Formation, Development, Enrichment, and Maintenance

by Abdul Khaleque
Foreword by Ronald P. Rohner


Intimate relationships affect all of our lives, throughout our lives, but how?

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February 2018


Pages 428
Volumes 1
Size 6 1/8x9 1/4
Topics Psychology/General
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This comprehensive research-based book is a next-generation study of intimate relationships that explores implications for health and well-being across cultures, genders, and traditional as well as non-traditional relationships.

This book fills the need for a contemporary analysis of intimate relationships and their implications for people's health, well-being, and quality of life. It covers topics not ordinarily included in textbooks on this topic, in non-traditional areas such as LGBT relationships. The text also addresses intervention strategies for relationship problems and offers tools and techniques for assessing intimate relationships.

Chapters are organized to present information about the origin, formation, development, enrichment, and maintenance of intimate relationships in a way that allows readers to build upon what they have learned. The text provides integrated and evidence-based information on almost all aspects of intimate relationships and will be of interest to undergraduate and graduate students as well as faculty in family studies, psychology, and other social sciences. Moreover, counselors, clinicians, and therapists working on conflict, violence, abuse, maladjustment, depression, deterioration, dissolution, reconstruction, and enrichment of marital and non-marital intimate relationships will find this text valuable for their practice.


  • Explores intimate relationships across ages, cultures, traditional and non-traditional relationships
  • Details the effects of intimate relationships on health, well-being, and quality of life
  • Describes research tools and methods for assessing relationships
  • Explains intervention strategies for relationship problems
Author Info

Abdul Khaleque, PhD, is adjunct professor in the Department of Human Development and Family Studies at the University of Connecticut and Senior Scientist at the Ronald and Nancy Rohner Center for the Study of Interpersonal Acceptance and Rejection at the University of Connecticut. He is coauthor of The Handbook for the Study of Parental Acceptance and Rejection and has authored or coauthored some 120 research articles and 40 book chapters.

Table of Contents

Foreword by Ronald P. Rohner



Chapter 1 Introduction

Origin and Meaning of Intimacy
Elements of Intimacy
Intimate Relationships
Dynamics and Dimensions of Intimate Relationships
Dimensions of Intimate Relationships
Fear of Intimacy
Correlates of Intimate Relationships
Chapter Summary
Reflective Questions

Chapter 2 Research Methods

Major Concepts
Characteristics of Research
Research Objectives
Research Information
Research Topic and Proposal
Research Designs
Chapter Summary
Reflective Questions

Chapter 3 Intimate Relationships across the Lifespan

Major Lifespan Premises
Attachment Relationships during Adolescence
Romantic Relationships of Adolescents
Sexual Behavior of Adolescents
Teen Pregnancy and Abortion
Adult Intimate Relationships
Chapter Summary
Reflective Questions

Chapter 4 Historical and Theoretical Perspectives of Intimate Relationships

Historical Perspective
Theoretical Perspective
Psychosocial Theory
Humanistic Theory
Bioecological Systems Theory
Chapter Summary
Reflective Questions

Chapter 5 Interpersonal Acceptance-Rejection Theory and Attachment Theory

Interpersonal Acceptance-Rejection Theory
Origin of Interpersonal Acceptance-Rejection Theory
Basic Tenets of Interpersonal Acceptance-Rejection Theory
Paradigm Shift in Interpersonal Acceptance-Rejection Theory
Cross-Cultural Implications of Interpersonal Acceptance-Rejection Theory
Criticisms of the Theory
Attachment Theory
Chapter Summary
Reflective Questions

Chapter 6 Theory-Based Research on Intimate Relationships

Review of IPARTheory Literature
Attachment Research Literature
Review of Adult Attachment Research
Chapter Summary
Reflective Questions

Chapter 7 Communication in Intimate Relationships

Different Categories of Communication
Effective Communication
Chapter Summary
Reflective Questions

Chapter 8 Attraction and Intimate Relationships

Foundation of Attraction
Attraction and Personality
Attraction among Gays and Lesbians
Attraction and Gender Stereotypes
Attraction and Gender-Atypical Traits
Predictors of Attraction
Theories of Attraction
Chapter Summary
Reflective Questions

Chapter 9 Friendship

Basis of Friendships
Components of Friendship
Characteristics of a Good Friend
Difference between Friendship and Love
Rules of Friendship
Quality of Friendship
Friendship Expectations
Dimensions of Friendship Expectations
Differences in Friendship
Cross-Sex Friendship
Managing Sexual Attraction in Friendship
Obstacles to Friendship
Friendship across the Lifespan
Developmental Outcomes of Friendship
Chapter Summary
Reflective Questions

Chapter 10 Love

Components of Love
Patterns of Love
Individual Differences in Love
Different Perspectives on Love
How Long Does Love Last?
Chapter Summary
Reflective Questions

Chapter 11 Sexuality

Sexual Attitudes and Behavior
Sexual Attitudes and Behavior of Older Adults
Sexual Double Standard
Sexual Orientation
Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity
Cultural Aspects of Sexuality
Sexual Desire and Gender
Sex in Marital and Nonmarital Relationships
Safe and Healthy Sex
Sexual Ethics, Morality, and Religion
Sexual Satisfaction
Sexual Coercion and Aggression in Intimate Relationships
Chapter Summary
Reflective Questions

Chapter 12 Intimate Relationships in Married Life

Types of Marriage
Marital Partner Selection
Performing Marriage
Effects of Social Changes on Marriage
Intimacy in Marriage
Marriage and Happiness
Marital Quality, Satisfaction, and Happiness
Happy and Stable Marriage
Theories of Marital Satisfaction and Happiness
Money and Marital Happiness
Predictors of Happiness
Steps to Happiness
Chapter Summary
Reflective Questions

Chapter 13 Intimate Relationships in Alternative Lifestyles

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Relationships
Lesbian Relationships
Gay Relationships
Relationships between Bisexual Men and Women
Transgender Relationships
Genderqueer Relationships
Chapter Summary
Reflective Questions

Chapter 14 Conflict, Abuse, and Violence in Intimate Relationships

Conflict in Intimate Relationships
Partner Abuse
Violence in Intimate Relationships
Chapter Summary
Reflective Questions

Chapter 15 Deterioration and Loss of Intimate Relationships

Deterioration of Intimate Relationships
Loss of Intimate Relationships
Stages of Dissolution
Postbreakup Relationships
Coping with Relationship Breakups
Chapter Summary
Reflective Questions

Chapter 16 Reconstruction and Enhancement of Intimate Relationships

Techniques for Repairing Intimate Relationships
Enrichment of Intimate Relationships
Maintenance of Intimate Relationships
Chapter Summary
Reflective Questions





"Written by Abdul Khaleque, who has extensively researched the topic, it was expected that this book would be exceptional—and it more than lives up to that promise. Conceived primarily for undergraduate students, the book is an invaluable resource not only for them but also for graduate students, faculties, practitioners, and general audiences… The book is well-written in a clear, straightforward, unambiguous style that is ideal for learners. . . . Intimate Relationships across the Lifespan is rare in its quality. The book is essential reading for everyone interested in the study of intimate relationships, and it is even more important to those who study interpersonal acceptance and rejection."Interpersonal Acceptance


2019 IPPY Award Bronze Medal in Sexuality/Relationships — Independent Publisher

2019 IPPY Award Silver Medal in Psychology/Mental Health Category — Independent Publisher

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