Interpersonal Consequences of Self-Disclosures: The effect of self-esteem on perceived risks of self-disclosure
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Frequency of self-disclosure has been linked to many benefits for relationships, but people tend to dislike those who frequently disclose negativity. Individuals lower in self-esteem (LSEs) self-disclose less than individuals higher in self-esteem (HSEs), but when LSEs do disclose, they tend to disclose a high proportion of negativity. I propose that LSEs behave this way because they do not understand the consequences of negativity compared to positivity. Specifically, I propose that, relative to HSEs, LSEs expect the interpersonal consequences of positive and negative disclosures to be more similar. In the current study, I examine the association between self-esteem and expected consequences of self-disclosures in two close relationship contexts. Results showed that: Both LSEs and HSEs expected less favourable reactions to negative disclosures than to positive ones, LSEs expected less favourable reactions to all disclosures than did HSEs, and LSEs differentiated between negative and positive disclosures as much, if not more, than HSEs. This study suggests that LSEs do, in fact, understand the potential consequences of negativity as well as HSEs do.
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Cameron Smith (2018). Interpersonal Consequences of Self-Disclosures: The effect of self-esteem on perceived risks of self-disclosure. UWSpace. http://hdl.handle.net/10012/13721