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A daily diary study of the romantic partner relationship dynamics associated with anger and other posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms

APA Citation:

Hyatt, C. S., Halvorson, M. A., & Campbell, S. B. (2023). A daily diary study of the romantic partner relationship dynamics associated with anger and other posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 36(3), 484-495. https://doi.org/10.1002/jts.22921

Abstract Created by REACH:

This study examined how Service members’ anger and symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) related to their partners’ accommodation behaviors and to the level of disclosure and intimacy in their romantic relationship. 64 couples completed a baseline survey; then, for 2 weeks, each partner completed a nightly self-report survey. Service members reported their PTSD symptoms (e.g., avoidance, reexperiencing) and anger level, while their partners reported their accommodation behaviors (i.e., general and anger accommodation). Both partners reported disclosure and intimacy within the relationship. The study examined average levels of PTSD symptoms and anger, as well as fluctuations in these variables. Overall, daily fluctuation in Service members’ anger were related to more partner accommodation and less intimacy.


Mental health

Branch of Service:

Multiple branches

Military Affiliation:

Active Duty

Subject Affiliation:

Active duty service member
Spouse of service member or veteran
Guard/Reserve member


Adulthood (18 yrs & older)
Young adulthood (18 - 29 yrs)
Thirties (30 - 39 yrs)
Middle age (40 - 64 yrs)


Longitudinal Study
Quantitative Study


Hyatt, Courtland S., Halvorson, Max A., Campbell, Sarah B.


Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is linked to negative relationship outcomes, but the relational processes that link specific PTSD symptoms to these outcomes over granular periods are not well understood. The current study used a daily diary methodology to investigate the associations between specific PTSD symptoms (i.e., anger, avoidance, reexperiencing, hyperarousal, and numbing) and proximal indices of relationship functioning (i.e., accommodation behaviors, disclosure, intimacy). Participants were members of 64 couples, each comprising a male service member (SM) and female romantic partner (RP), who completed daily assessments of PTSD symptoms and indices of relationship functioning for 2 weeks. The results suggest a somewhat unique role of anger on relationship dynamics: Although mean levels of PTSD symptom clusters were associated with negative relationship outcomes at the bivariate level, daily fluctuations in anger were uniquely related to accommodation behaviors and SM- and RP-reported intimacy in multilevel models, Bs =

Publication Type:

REACH Publication


post traumatic stress disorder, PTSD, relationship, daily diary

View Research Summary:

REACH Publication Type:

Research Summary

REACH Newsletter:

  August 2023

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