Validity and Utility of a Multidimensional Model of Received Support in Intimate Relationships

Robin A. Barry*, Mali Bunde, Rebecca L. Brock, Erika Lawrence

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

64 Scopus citations


The authors of the present study statistically address the largely conceptual debate about the multidimensional nature of received support in intimate relationships. The Support in Intimate Relationships Rating Scale (SIRRS) was factor analyzed in 3 samples of dating and married couples. A novel, 4-factor structure of support types was generated that constituted esteem/emotional, physical comfort, informational, and tangible support types. This structure was reliable and valid in dating and marital relationships, across men and women, and across time. Each support type also demonstrated incremental validity for explaining marital adjustment, depression symptoms, and anxiety symptoms longitudinally. This study is among the first to generate and cross-validate a factor analytically derived set of support types for received support and the first to do so regarding partner support specifically. This is also the first study to replicate a distinct set of support types across different types of intimate relationships, across both sexes, and over time within relationships. Implications for enhancing functional theories of support and for augmenting the construct validity of a multidimensional model of received support are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)48-57
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Family Psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2009


  • Support in Intimate Relationships Rating Scale (SIRRS)
  • couples
  • factor analyses
  • measurement
  • social support

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Validity and Utility of a Multidimensional Model of Received Support in Intimate Relationships'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this