I study intimate relationships as important contexts of behavioral, emotional, and psychological adjustment of individuals across the lifespan. My interests focus on 1) characterizing the interplay between romantic relationship characteristics and individuals’ risky and healthy behaviors, 2) identifying interdependence and synchrony between couples/family members along multiple domains (e.g., partners’ emotions during conflict, mothers’ and children’s cortisol levels across the day), and 3) explicating the role of naturally-occurring marital conflict in child, parent, and family functioning. With undergraduate and graduate research assistants, I pursue these investigations in multiple studies conducted in the UW Couples Lab.
My ongoing research elucidates intimate relationships as a central context for the well being and development of individuals. I incorporate multi-domain assessments of relational processes, adopt a broad view of well being, and employ cutting-edge quantitative methods and modeling. Biopsychosocial, family systems, and life course perspectives guide my work. Recent projects include leveraging the NICHD Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development to explicate family factors associated with parents’ longitudinal marital functioning, and sampling young adults in dating partnerships for the interplay between relationship functioning and partner adjustment.
Intimate relationships; Family stress and coping; Mentoring undergraduate and graduate students in lab-based research experiences