Master of Arts in Communication Studies
Erin M. Sahlstein, Committee Chair
First Committee Member
Tara M. Emmers-Sommer
Second Committee Member
Joseph M. Valenzano III
Graduate Faculty Representative
Katherine M. Hertlein
Number of Pages
This study addressed communication constraints perceived by individuals in long-distance dating relationships (LDDRs) and how these constraints are managed. Internal constraints are identified within the boundaries of the individual or relationship and external constraints are those that originate from outside the boundaries of the individual or relationship. Semi-structured qualitative interviews were conducted with 27 participants; ages ranged from 18-35. Participants reported perceiving 11 internal constraints (mediated communication, avoidance, talk habits, physical absence, emotions, view of outsiders, uncertainty and expectations, effort, notions of distance, visits, and miscellaneous) and five external constraints (schedules, social network, finances, and technology, miscellaneous). Participants reported managing constraints as individuals and as dyads. Constraints are discussed to be hierarchical; notions of distance, schedules, social network, finances, and technology are primary constraints; all others are secondary. Emotions and avoidance also allow participants to manage other constraints. Applications and areas of future research are also discussed.
Communication; Constraints; Interviewing; Long-distance relationships; Qualitative methods; Relational dialectics
Communication | Social Psychology
Farrell, Jenny Marie, "Notions of distance: Communication constraints in long-distance dating relationships" (2009). UNLV Theses, Dissertations, Professional Papers, and Capstones. 40.