The relationship sabotage scale: an evaluation of factor analyses and constructive validity

Peel, Raquel ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-4909-9844 and Caltabiano, Nerina (2021) The relationship sabotage scale: an evaluation of factor analyses and constructive validity. BMC Psychology, 9:146. pp. 1-17.

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Abstract

Background

Some individuals are no longer entering romantic relationships, others move through relationships too quickly searching for 'the one' and making quick assessments of their romantic partners, while others stay in their relationships but 'check out' or do not work on their issues. These are conclusions from two studies: (1) an interview with psychologists who specialise in relationship therapy, and (2) an analysis of individuals’ lived experiences of relationships. The concept of relationship sabotage can explain these phenomena. However, presently, there is no instrument to conceptualise and empirically measure how people continue to employ self-defeating attitudes and behaviors in (and out) of relationships to impede success, or withdraw effort, and justify failure.

Methods and Results

A series of three studies (involving a total of 1365 English speaking individuals of diverse gender orientation, sexual orientation, and cultural background, with relationship sabotage experience) were conceptualized for the current project to fill the need for scale development and to build empirical evidence on the topic of self-sabotage in romantic relationships. The scale was developed over two studies using exploratory factor analysis and one-congeneric model analyses. The third study, using confirmatory factor analysis, confirmed the final structure for the Relationship Sabotage Scale (RSS), which contains 12 items and three factors: defensiveness, trust difficulty, and lack of relationship skills. Constructive validity analyses were also conducted.

Conclusion

The RSS is a brief scale that provides conclusive information about individual patterns in relationships. Findings using this scale can offer explanations regarding the reasons that individuals engage in destructive behaviours from one relationship to the next. Investigations should continue to test a model for sabotage in romantic relationships using the developed scale and other factors such as relationship diferences and insecure attachment. More specifically, this measure can be used to understand mediator constructs of relational outcomes within the attachment framework to explain relationship dissolution and work towards relationship maintenance.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: © The Author(s) 2021. Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Psychology and Counselling (1 Jan 2015 -)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Psychology and Counselling (1 Jan 2015 -)
Date Deposited: 22 Sep 2021 05:42
Last Modified: 04 Nov 2021 02:18
Uncontrolled Keywords: romantic relationships, relationship sabotage, self-sabotage, defensiveness, trust difficulty, relationship skills, scale development, relationship sabotage scale
Fields of Research (2008): 17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170199 Psychology not elsewhere classified
17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170113 Social and Community Psychology
17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170102 Developmental Psychology and Ageing
Fields of Research (2020): 52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5201 Applied and developmental psychology > 520105 Psychological methodology, design and analysis
52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5205 Social and personality psychology > 520505 Social psychology
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): C Society > 92 Health > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920401 Behaviour and Health
Socio-Economic Objectives (2020): 20 HEALTH > 2004 Public health (excl. specific population health) > 200409 Mental health
20 HEALTH > 2004 Public health (excl. specific population health) > 200401 Behaviour and health
Identification Number or DOI: https://doi.org/10.1186/s40359-021-00644-0
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/43684

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