How you cope with your divorce is revealed by how you talk about it than what you say about it, says a new study. University of Arizona researchers found that people in the midst of a divorce typically reveal how they are handling things by how they speak.
The team recruited couples, which had recently separated, and a set of students to judge their reactions on questionnaires, audio recordings, stream-of-consciousness thoughts and feelings about the participants’ former partners and relationships.The judges were divided into two groups – one that only read transcripts and the other, which heard the recordings. Both groups had to evaluate the ability of the subjects to control their emotions, cope with their separations, and handle stress and negative aspects of post-separation life and the subjects' thoughts about the relationship.
Ashley Mason found that the judges who listened to the sound clips were more likely to accurately predict how well or not well the subject was coping with the process of separation.
"It's important to know that it is not about what people are saying. It's how they're saying it that is tipping us off to how they're doing, and more importantly, how they're going to do," Mason said.
"Do I need to call more often or provide more social support? Should I recommend psychotherapy? Not everyone has an organized social support system, and these data shed light on how we interpret what others need from us."