Rituals and Nuptials: The Emotional and Relational Consequences of Relationship Rituals

Published on Mar 6, 2019in Journal of the Association for Consumer Research
· DOI :10.1086/702761
Ximena Garcia-Rada6
Estimated H-index: 6
Ovul Sezer8
Estimated H-index: 8
Michael I. Norton71
Estimated H-index: 71
AbstractFour studies reveal the benefits of relationship rituals: couples with relationship rituals report more positive emotions and greater relationship satisfaction and commitment than those without them. We show that rituals are crucial for understanding consumption practices in romantic relationships. Using a sample of romantic dyads, we identify a novel moderating role of mutual agreement, such that both members of a couple must agree that they have a ritual: different couples can see the same consumption behavior (e.g., paying for a weekly date night) as either a ritual or a routine, and the benefits accrue only to those couples who jointly view it as a symbolically meaningful ritual. We contribute to the literature on rituals by empirically documenting the relationships between rituals, specific emotions, and relationship satisfaction, and by demonstrating that the same sequence of actions can have different psychological effects due to the role of mutual agreement. Finally, we contribute to resea...
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