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Dependence Regulation

Definition

Dependence regulation refers to people's tendency to adjust how close they allow themselves to be to a significant other to match the perceived risks of rejection. People risk greater closeness when they are more confident that their relationship partner accepts them and regards them positively (and the risk of rejection is perceived to be lower). In contrast, people find less to value in relationships where they are more uncertain or doubtful about the other's regard for them (and the risk of rejection is perceived to be higher). People regulate dependence so that they can protect against the potential pain of rejection in advance by devaluing relationships where rejection seems likely. After all, it should hurt less to feel rejected if people can convince themselves that ...

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