Coupling Longitudinal Data and Multilevel Modeling to Examine the Antecedents and Consequences of Jealousy Experiences in Romantic Relationships: A Test of the Relational Turbulence Model


  • This research is a portion of the first author’s dissertation conducted under the direction of the second author at the University of Wisconsin—Madison.

Jennifer A. Theiss; e-mail:


We used longitudinal data and multilevel modeling to examine how intimacy, relational uncertainty, and failed attempts at interdependence influence emotional, cognitive, and communicative responses to romantic jealousy, and how those experiences shape subsequent relationship characteristics. The relational turbulence model (Solomon & Knobloch, 2004) highlights how intimacy, relational uncertainty, and interference from partners influence and reflect reactions to events that occur within romantic relationships. Drawing from the theory, we predicted that (a) relational uncertainty and interference from partners are positively associated with cognitive and emotional jealousies; (b) the intensity of romantic jealousy, relational intimacy, and a partner’s interference is positively associated with the directness of communication about jealousy; (c) relational uncertainty is negatively associated with communicative directness; and (d) cognitive jealousy, emotional jealousy, and the directness of communicative responses to jealousy influence subsequent relationship characteristics. The results of the multilevel modeling revealed mixed support for our predictions. We explore the implications of this study for research on the relational turbulence model, relationship development, and jealousy.