Recent research has made it increasingly clear that close personal relationships are the cornerstone of interpersonal behaviour and social contact and that such relationships are more than merely common in human experience, they are necessary for survival. Research indicating that the quality of one's intimate relationships predict the frequency, severity, and prognosis of both psychological and medical complaints and also possibly mediate the influence of environmental stress on adjustment and well-being. It is clear that much work needs to be done in order to fully understand the nature and influence of relationships in our lives. The purpose of this annual series is to encourage and contribute to the continued development, integration, and cross-fertilization of research and theory on personal relationships, drawing on the considerable attention paid to this area in recent years by psychology and related disciplines.
Emphasis is given to topics which have received substantial empirical support in order to provide a forum for the continued development and evaluation of theories of personal relationships, and some papers will summarize and integrate ongoing programmes of research on important problems in this field. The third volume in this series, this book discusses such topics as communication in marriage, the effects illness and disability on friendship, and the social and psychological basis of developing relationships.