This study examined complaint avoidance in adult romantic relationships as a function of both exposure to family verbal aggression in childhood and taking conflict personally. Four hundred thirty-seven college students completed measures assessing their histories of family verbal aggression, complaint avoidance behaviors, and tendencies to take conflict personally. Results indicated that a history of family verbal aggression and three components of taking conflict personally, namely positive relational effects, negative relational effects, and like/dislike valence, were negatively associated with complaint avoidance. In addition, a history of family verbal aggression was positively associated with positive relational effects, negative relational effects, and like/dislike valence. The relationship between a history of family verbal aggression and complaint avoidance, however, was not mediated by taking conflict personally.
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