OSR Journal of Student Research

Article Title

Development of the Mate Expulsion Inventory


Nestor Maria


Mate retention tactics have been well-documented in literature using an evolutionary perspective. These tactics function to deter romantic partners from defection and fend off potential alternative partners. However, when individuals are in a relationship where the costs outweigh the benefits mate expulsion, not retention, may be their desired goal. The present set of studies were designed to identify mate expulsion tactics and examine the relationships between mate expulsion, mate retention, and relationship satisfaction. A first set of participants (N = 103) nominated behaviors individuals do to reduce commitment in, or terminate, a long-term relationship. This generated 168 possible mate expulsion tactics which were then rated by a second set of participants (N = 141). We retained the tactics most frequently used by participants during break-ups, which reduced the list to 54 tactics. In Study 3 (N= 500), participants currently in relationships will complete the Mate Retention Inventory, a relationship satisfaction measure, and rate the frequency with which they employ the mate expulsion behaviors in their current relationships. We will examine the factor structure of the Mate Expulsion Inventory and hypothesize that mate expulsion will be negatively related to relationship satisfaction and only weakly correlated with mate retention. Our results demonstrate that human mating psychology includes mechanisms that function to terminate relationships and expulse mates unique from mate retention mechanisms.

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