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Study documents the importance of supportive spouses in coping with work-related stress
Date:2/16/2012

nstead, I took my wife out to dinner and heard everything about her bad boss and how her co-workers weren't pulling their weight. By the end of the evening, we both felt at least a little bit better."

Hochwarter also noted that the men and women differed by gender in terms of what support behaviors worked best for them. In general, wives appreciated getting "cut some slack" in terms of household activities; feeling wanted; and receiving expressions of warmth and affection. The husbands, meanwhile, were more likely to respond positively to offers of assistance with errands and feeling appreciated and needed.

Both husbands and wives, however, were especially grateful for their spouse's help in getting time away from work and home hassles to simply rest and recharge their batteries.

"When stress enters any relationship, it has the potential to either bind people together or break them apart," Hochwarter said. "Findings strongly confirm this with respect to job tension. What also became obvious was the critical role of communication and trust among spouses; without them, you have a foundation best described as crumbling, even in the best of circumstances."

Affirming that is the view of one 54-year-old administrative assistant in the study. When questioned how job stress can affect a relationship, she responded, "Ask my ex-husband."

The study is being prepared for publication.


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Contact: Wayne Hochwarter
whochwarter@cob.fsu.edu
850-644-7849
Florida State University
Source:Eurekalert

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