Antecedents and consequences of demand/withdraw.J Fam Psychol. 2009 Oct; 23(5):749-57.JF
The authors examined the immediate antecedents and consequences of the demand/withdraw interaction pattern within naturally occurring conflicts. Both partners in 75 couples, including gay, lesbian, and straight couples, were interviewed individually regarding 2 recent conflicts, 1 chosen by each partner, and completed postinterview questionnaires. Interviews were coded for antecedents (e.g., upset prior to conflict), consequences (e.g., resolution of conflict), and demand/withdraw behaviors. In the postinterview questionnaires, participants rated demand/withdraw behaviors and their satisfaction with the outcome of the discussion. Results demonstrated that demand/withdraw behavior shifts depending on whose issue is under discussion, but other proximal antecedents did not significantly predict demand/withdraw. Regarding consequences, results indicated that most conflicts do not result in resolution, and most resolutions do not involve agreed-on change. Demand/withdraw did not predict a decreased likelihood of resolution. However, for those issues that were resolved, demand/withdraw resulted in a decreased likelihood of changes being agreed on. Furthermore, demand/withdraw predicted less satisfaction with the outcome of the discussion, even when controlling for the substantive outcome. Results were generally replicated across both self-report and coder ratings of demand/withdraw.