This study was part of an ongoing investigation into four of the potential challenges confronting women and men in cross-sex fiendships (O’Meara, 1989). Unlike previous research, which explored the perspective of only one member of each cross-sex fnendship, this study examined the perspectives of both individuals in cross-sex fienhhips. The levels of actual and perceived agreement and understanding were investigated through utilization of a variation of Heiderian Balance Theory and Laing’s Interpersonal Perception Method. Seventy three pairs of cross-sex fiends completed a survey examining direct perspectives, metaperspectives, and meta-metaperspectives, on the four challenges. Over 92% of the participants were heterosexual, 68% were Caucasian, 10% were Afican American, 10% were Hispanic, 3% were Asian, 4% were Native American, and 5% indicated “other.” Results indicate that cross-sex fiends generally agree that O’Meara’s four challenges present only minimal problems in their individual relationships, and that balance theory provides a viable explanation of how perceived agreement and understanding concerning challenges are arrived at within cross-sex fnendships. Additionally, results illustrating disagreements and misunderstandings within cross-sex friendships highlight the importance of looking at the perspectives of both individuals within a dyad.
Sex Roles – Springer Journals
Published: Aug 2, 2008
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