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Quirk, Kelley, PhD • March 01, 2015

Problems in intimate relationships are associated with a host of negative psychological and physical health consequences, such as depression, anxiety, and heart disease (Hawkins & Booth, 2005; Fincham & Beach, 2010; Whisman, 2007). Researchers have identified several types of interpersonal behaviors among couples that predict relationship distress or break-up/divorce; these are referred to as danger signs. Danger signs can take many forms, from aggressive behavior expressed on a first date to a long-term pattern of repeated escalation or withdrawal during discussions and arguments. Early and accurate awareness of danger signs may help individuals make healthy decisions about how to proceed within a new or long-term relationship.

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