In the 34th installment of SAGE’s Relationship Matters podcast, hosted by Dr. Bjarne Holmes of Champlain College, Dr. Sharon Sassler (Cornell University) discusses her recent research on how couples meet.
Sassler, and co-author Amanda Jayne Miller (University of Indianapolis) interviewed 62 cohabitating couples about how the couple members met and how much they think others support their relationships. The researchers were particularly interested in whether social class played a role in any link between how couples meet and their perceived relationship support.
Couples that met through family friends, family members, or in the community (e.g., via shared hobbies) experienced greater feelings of relationship support relative to couples who met through anomic settings such as bars or the internet. For them, they often viewed their way of having met as less socially acceptable and devised cover stories about their first encounters. People who meet through weaker social ties may experience less social support for the relationship. In addition, the findings suggested that working class couples had a tendency to meet in more anomic settings or through weaker ties than their middle-class counterparts.
For the full story, listen to the podcast here.