Relationship and relational mutuality as predictors of well-being and six constructs of well-being

Karen Kruger, Tennessee State University


This research focused on a conceptual ethos of relationship visualized by Miller (1986a) at the Wellesley College Stone Center, the development of an overarching conceptual model of relationship, the Relational Model (Miller, 1986b), and a modus operandi for this model of relationship, relational mutuality (Genero, Miller, Surrey, & Baldwin, 1992), measurable by The Mutual Psychological Development Questionnaire (MPDQ; Genero, Miller, & Surrey, 1992). This study examined 162 participants (127 women and 35 men), some of whom were students attending an urban university in the mid-south, and 22 participants from the community, each with an acknowledged relationship with a significant other (living together exclusively; married; dating exclusively), in terms of assessing a level of relational mutuality (MPDQ). Relational mutuality scores were then correlated with a comprehensive well-being score using the Scales of Psychological Well-Being (Ryff, 1989a), and correlated with Ryff's six components of well-being. Results demonstrated weak to moderate correlations with the strongest correlational indicators stemming from correlations between the Ryff well-being components. One-way analyses of variance were conducted to evaluate relational mutuality and well-being looking for statistical difference between feminine and masculine groups (based on Bem Sex-Role Inventory scores) and gender-based groups. The results were not supportive of strong differences, only marginal. Twelve ANOVAs were conducted to ascertain if there were significant differences between the six components of well-being (Ryff, 1989a) and groups, based on a BSRI classification and gender. Marginally significant results were demonstrated. Eight factorial ANOVAs were run to ascertain interactions between the groups and the eight variables of the research with significant outcomes for two of the components of well-being. This study, as conducted utilizing research and relational conceptualizations from the Stone Center (Genero, Miller, & Surrey, 1992), and well-being, as researched and conceptualized by Ryff (1989a) at the University of Wisconsin, was the first such research design incorporation of these particular assessment instruments, wherein statistical significance could be ascertained between relational mutuality and a model of well-being.

Subject Area

Developmental psychology|Social psychology

Recommended Citation

Karen Kruger, "Relationship and relational mutuality as predictors of well-being and six constructs of well-being" (2005). ETD Collection for Tennessee State University. Paper AAI3187596.