Beautiful, but not so Nice in Memory: Romantic Relationship Status Biases the Processing of an Attractive Alternative’s Behavior

M.L. Visserman, J.C. Karremans

    Research output: Contribution to ConferencePosterOther research output

    Abstract

    Prior research demonstrated that romantically involved individuals devaluate the physical attractiveness of potential alternative mates (i.e., the derogation effect). The present research examines whether romantically involved individuals also process behavioral information of attractive alternatives in a biased manner. When presented with behavioral information of an attractive mate, Study 1 demonstrated that involved participants recalled more negative behaviors, and also evaluated these behaviors more negatively, compared to uninvolved participants. Study 2 demonstrated that romantically involved participants recalled more negative (but also neutral) behaviors when it concerned behaviors displayed by an attractive alternative as compared to a same-sex other. Together, these results provide initial evidence that relationship status biases the processing of an attractive alternative’s behavior negatively, most clearly demonstrated in how these behaviors are stored in memory. This biased processing of behavioral information may serve an important relationship protection function when confronted with a potential alternative mate.
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication statusPublished - 2014
    EventSociety for Personality and Social Psychology (SPSP) 2014, poster presentation -
    Duration: 1 Jan 20141 Jan 2014

    Conference

    ConferenceSociety for Personality and Social Psychology (SPSP) 2014, poster presentation
    Period1/01/141/01/14

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