Close relationships are a vital part of people's daily lives; thus family members, friends, and romantic partners play an integral role in people's health and well-being. Understanding the ways in which close relationships both shape and reflect people's health and wellness is an important area of inquiry. Showcasing studies from various disciplines that are on the cutting-edge of research exploring the interdependence between health and relationships, this collection highlights several relationship processes that are instrumental in the maintenance of health and the management of illness, including interpersonal influence, information management, uncertainty, social support, and communication. Although the existing health literature is rich with knowledge about individual and ecological factors that are influential in promoting certain health behaviors, the relationship scholars featured in this volume have much to contribute in terms of documenting the interpersonal dynamics that are involved in experiences of health and illness.
Introduction: the interdependent influence among relationships, health, and wellness Jennifer A. Theiss and Kathryn Greene; Part I. Interpersonal Influence in Health and Relationships: 1. Differences in perceptions of spousal influence and family communication in cancer risk-reducing behaviors Wendy C. Birmingham and Maija Reblin; 2. Stigma, heteronormative passing with healthcare providers, and partner health involvement in male same-sex couples Stephen M. Haas; 3. 'Let's take a walk': relationship maintenance and health communication in romantic relationships Tricia Burke; Part II. Information Management in Health and Relationships: 4. Health-related issues that individuals with type 2 diabetes avoid discussing with their romantic partner John Leustek and Jennifer A. Theiss; 5. Closeness, recipient response, and interaction effectiveness: an application of the actor-partner interdependence model in the mental health disclosures Maria K. Venetis, Patricia E. Gettings and Skye Chernichky-Karcher; 6. From the drawing board to the kitchen table: an analysis of parental messages concerning nutrition, physical activity, and weight Emily Scheinfeld, Erin Nelson and Brittani Cook; Part III. Uncertainty in Health and Relationships: 7. 'We have been robbed of the life we planned': relational turbulence and experiences of Alzheimer's disease Danielle Catona; 8. Communication as a source of misunderstanding and a resource for responding to the stress of parental caregiving Teresa Keeler; 9. Examining uncertainty and interference with cardiology patients: applying a relational turbulence perspective in health contexts Amanda Carpenter, Kathryn Greene, Maria G. Checton and Danielle Catona; 10. Uncertainty management in bereavement: parent and child uncertainty sources and management strategies Brandi N. Frisby, Jacob M. Matig and Christina J. Harris; Part IV. Support and Caregiving in Health and Relationships: 11. Family reactions to partner stress and depression in same-sex couples: a dyadic examination of the moderating effects of dyadic coping Chun Tao, Ashley K. Randall and Casey J. Toenhagen; 12. 'I just want my wife and my life back': men's experiences of stress and social support during their partner's postpartum depression Keli Steuber-Fazio, Keelin Moran, Caitlin McNair and Erica Cogland; 13. Communication skills (Comskil) training for oncology nurses to improve patient centered care Smita C. Banerjee, Ruth Manna and Patricia A. Parker; Part V. Communication Patterns in Health and Relationships: 14. Alcoholic and non-alcoholic parents' orientations toward conformity and conversation as predictors of attachment and psychological well-being for adult children of alcoholics Marie C. Haverfield and Jennifer A. Theiss; 15. Alzheimer's caregiver distress in adulthood: the role of time invested in caregiving and family verbal aggression in childhood Lindsay Susan Aloia and Anne M. Stone; 16. Depression and sexual intimacy: layered challenges and communication strategies Amy L. Delaney; Epilogue: the important role of relationship research in promoting healthy individuals and relationships Jennifer A. Theiss and Kathryn Greene.