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This study examined two factors—affirming/nonaffirming style and dyad sex—to determine if they influence perceptions of verbal aggression and argumentation behavior in an interpersonal dispute. Participants read a play script that contained messages exchanged between two individuals engaged in a conflict episode. All statements were argumentative in nature (i.e., they attacked the adversary's position on an issue) except for some statements that contained verbal aggression (i.e., they attacked the adversary's self-concept). The individuals communicated with either an affirming (relaxed, friendly, attentive) or a nonaffirming (tense, unfriendly, inattentive) style. The sex of the dyad (all male, all female) was also manipulated. Fewer mistakes were made in the perception of verbal aggression in the conflict when the individuals communicated with an affirming rather than a nonaffirming style. More verbally aggressive but less argumentative conduct was perceived when the individuals communicated with a nonaffirming style. Participants perceived more verbally aggressive behavior than actually existed when the dyad composition was female.