Robin S Edelstein

Robin S Edelstein
University of Michigan | U-M · Department of Psychology

About

83
Publications
40,355
Reads
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3,524
Citations
Citations since 2017
23 Research Items
1754 Citations
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2017201820192020202120222023050100150200250300
2017201820192020202120222023050100150200250300
Additional affiliations
September 2007 - present
University of Michigan
Position
  • Professor (Associate)

Publications

Publications (83)
Article
Perceived reactions to sharing of good news (capitalization), can have important implications for romantic relationships. Typically, when European Americans perceive that their partners respond in an active constructive (versus passive and/or destructive,) manner, they tend to perceive their partners as more responsive and report higher relationshi...
Article
Does trait competitiveness predict the desire to outperform others both within and beyond competitive contexts? We conducted five studies (N = 820) to investigate this question. We find that trait competitiveness is a stronger predictor of a person's competitive motivation when situational competitive pressures are weak than when they are strong (S...
Chapter
Research on testosterone has long been dominated by a focus on “high testosterone” behaviors, such as aggression, competition, and dominance. The vast majority of this work, including in humans, has also been conducted in exclusively male samples, based in part on presumed links between testosterone and masculinity. Yet testosterone is implicated i...
Article
Full-text available
Objective Hormones are often conceptualized as biological markers of individual differences and have been associated with a variety of behavioral indicators and characteristics, such as mating behavior or acquiring and maintaining dominance. However, before researchers create strong theoretical models for how hormones modulate individual and social...
Article
Full-text available
Objective and Background: Previous research suggests that cultural adaptation is associated with Mexican-origin couples’ marital outcomes, including marital distress and rates of dissolution. However, research on the marital implications of different types of spousal differences in cultural adaptation often omits important dyadic dynamics (i.e., in...
Article
Despite progress in understanding the social neuroendocrinology of close relationship processes, most work has focused on negative experiences, such as relationship conflict or stress. As a result, much less is known about the neuroendocrine implications of positive, emotionally intimate close relationship experiences. In the current study, we rand...
Article
In the present study, attachment-related differences in long-term memory for a highly emotional life event, child sexual abuse (CSA), were investigated. Participants were 102 documented CSA victims whose cases were referred for prosecution approximately 14 years earlier. Consistent with the proposal that avoidant individuals defensively regulate th...
Chapter
Examines the potential positive and negative effects of legal involvement in children.
Article
Traumatized individuals are often encouraged to confront their experiences by talking or writing about them. However, survivors of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) might find it especially difficult to process abuse experiences, particularly when the abuse is more severe, which could put them at greater risk for mental health problems. The current stud...
Preprint
Full-text available
**Objective**: Hormones are often conceptualized as biological markers of individual differences and have been associated with a variety of behavioral indicators and characteristics, such as mating behavior or acquiring and maintaining dominance. However, before researchers create strong theoretical models for how hormones modulate individual and s...
Article
Close relationships have important implications for physical health and well‐being. However, not everyone approaches relationships in the same way. In this entry, we discuss how a person's attachment orientation, or characteristic approach toward close relationships, is associated with health outcomes. First, we briefly review the state of the curr...
Article
Objective We examined the extent to which prenatal expectations matched postpartum reality, and the implications of expectancy violation for relationship quality at postpartum, among heterosexual and lesbian couples transitioning to parenthood. Background During the transition to parenthood, soon‐to‐be parents form expectations about how their liv...
Article
During the transition to parenthood (TTP), both women and men report declines in sexual desire, which are thought to reflect an evolutionarily adaptive focus on parenting over mating. New parents also show changes in testosterone, a steroid hormone implicated in both parenting and mating, suggesting that changes in sexual desire may be associated w...
Article
Although increasing numbers of gay and lesbian individuals ultimately become parents, the vast majority of research on the transition to parenthood focuses exclusively on heterosexual samples. Even less is known about the physiological implications of this major life transition among those who identify as sexual minorities. The present study begins...
Preprint
Close relationships have important implications for physical health and well-being. However, not everyone approaches relationships in the same way. In this entry, we discuss how a person's attachment orientation, or characteristic approach toward close relationships, is associated with health outcomes. First, we briefly review the state of the curr...
Article
We assessed parents' testosterone reactivity to the Strange Situation Procedure (SSP), a moderately stressful parent-infant interaction task that pulls for parental nurturance and caregiving behavior. Parents (146 mothers, 154 fathers) interacted with their 1-year-old infants, and saliva samples were obtained pre- and post-task to assess changes in...
Article
Objective: Perceptions of early caregiving experiences are hypothesized to be influential across the life span. However, previous research testing this hypothesis focuses primarily on young adults and use mostly cross-sectional designs. The current study examined associations between memories of early caregiving experiences and trajectories of dep...
Article
Full-text available
Our study examines attachment-related differences in the use of dating applications (dating apps). We collected online survey data regarding people’s attachment orientation and dating app preferences. People with a more anxious attachment orientation were more likely to report using dating apps than people lower in anxious attachment; people with a...
Article
Full-text available
This study examined links between the language bereaved children use to describe the death of their caregiver and children's psychological/behavioral functioning and coping strategies. Participants included 44 children (54.5% male) aged 7 to 12 (M = 9.05) years who were bereaved by the death of a caregiver. Children were assessed via self‐ and care...
Article
Full-text available
The death of a loved one, particularly a parent, has been identified as not only the most common, but also the most distressing form of adversity youth may experience in their lifetime. Surviving caregivers’ communication with their children may play a critical role in shaping bereaved children’s psychological functioning. However, few studies have...
Article
Research on individual differences in attachment-and their links to emotion, cognition, and behavior in close relationships-has proliferated over the last several decades. However, the majority of this research has focused on children and young adults. Little is known about mean-level changes in attachment orientation beyond early life, in part due...
Article
People in 12-step addiction recovery programs who have difficulty with social relationships and intimacy may be less likely to flourish given the highly social nature of 12-step programs. Gratitude is widely known among 12-step program members as a tool that facilitates well-being; in the field of positive psychology, gratitude is known for its pro...
Article
Traumatized individuals are often encouraged to confront their experiences by talking or writing about them. However, survivors of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) might find it especially difficult to process abuse experiences, particularly when the abuse is more severe. The current study examined whether CSA survivors who use emotion language when de...
Article
During the transition to parenthood, both men and women experience hormone changes that are thought to promote parental care. Yet very few studies have explicitly tested the hypothesis that prenatal hormone changes are associated with postpartum parenting behavior. In a longitudinal study of 27 first-time expectant couples, we assessed whether pren...
Article
Narcissism is a personality trait characterized by feelings of grandiosity, a craving for admiration, and a lack of empathy. Although there are reasons to expect that narcissism might have adverse physiological and health implications, very little research has directly assessed such claims. Moreover, prior research specifically assessing links betw...
Article
The transition to parenthood has been associated with declines in testosterone among partnered fathers, which may reflect males' motivation to invest in the family. Moreover, preliminary evidence has found that couples show correlations in hormone levels across pregnancy that may also be linked to fathers' preparation for parenthood. The current st...
Article
The present pilot study sought to identify predictors of delays in child sexual abuse (CSA) disclosure, specifically whether emotional and physical abuse by a parental figure contributes to predicting delays over and above other important victim factors. Alleged CSA victims (N = 79), whose parental figures were not the purported sexual abuse perpet...
Article
In this review we argue that relatively recent evolutionary adaptations that are relational or psychological in nature might refocus, dampen, or otherwise shape hormonal processes related to evolutionarily “older” behaviors. We focus on the steroid hormones testosterone and estradiol and discuss a) their associations with “older relational processe...
Chapter
Adult attachment theory is a dominant framework for understanding behavior, emotion, and cognition in adult close relationships. It is rooted in the assumption that the underlying motivational systems that support parent–child relationships are also influential in adult intimate relationships. Current research in adult attachment examines changes i...
Article
We present data on the preliminary validation of a measure of romantic attachment orientation from the California Adult Q-Sort (CAQ). The CAQ is found in several longitudinal data sets, and researchers can use the CAQ to answer questions about changes in romantic attachment across the lifespan. Expert raters nominated CAQ items that were characteri...
Article
Full-text available
Despite considerable interest in understanding how stress influences memory accuracy and errors, particularly in children, methodological limitations have made it difficult to examine the effects of stress independent of the effects of the emotional valence of to-be-remembered information in developmental populations. In this study, we manipulated...
Article
In this review we argue that relatively recent evolutionary adaptations that are relational or psychological in nature might refocus, dampen, or otherwise shape hormonal processes related to evolutionarily “older” behaviors. We focus on the steroid hormones testosterone and estradiol and discuss a) their associations with “older relational processe...
Article
Personal mastery has been associated with many positive outcomes and may attenuate negative responses to life stressors. Our research extends prior work by examining whether personal mastery can buffer women from long-term outcomes associated with childhood sexual abuse (CSA). We expected that: (1) women with CSA histories would report more depress...
Article
One of the central tenets of attachment theory is that experiences in early childhood influence people’s approach to social relationships throughout the lifespan. We examined the influence of caregiver nurturance on the development of attachment orientation from adolescence to emerging adulthood in a sample of 103 individuals (50% female). Attachme...
Article
Objectives: Expectant mothers experience marked hormone changes throughout the transition to parenthood. Although similar neuroendocrine pathways are thought to support maternal and paternal behavior, much less is known about prenatal hormone changes in expectant fathers, especially in humans. Methods: We examined longitudinal changes in salivary...
Article
The purpose of this study was to examine the potential universality of age differences in romantic attachment. Relatively few studies have investigated attachment processes beyond young adulthood and very little is known about age differences in romantic attachment orientations in geographic regions outside North America. We examined attachment anx...
Article
Personal mastery has been associated with many positive outcomes and may attenuate negative responses to life stressors. Our research extends prior work by examining whether personal mastery can buffer women from long-term outcomes associated with childhood sexual abuse (CSA). We expected that: (1) women with CSA histories would report more depress...
Article
Close physical contact is a defining feature of intimate relationships across the lifespan and occurs in nearly all kinds of close relationships. However, there are important individual differences in the extent to which people feel comfortable engaging in intimate interactions. In two samples, attachment avoidance was associated with less positive...
Article
Many cultures designate specific holidays to celebrate love and affection, such as Valentine’s Day in Western culture. Intuition would suggest that holidays like Valentine’s Day would enhance perceptions of romantic relationships for most people. However, few empirical studies have examined how relationship evaluations vary when assessed on such ho...
Article
Testosterone is thought to be positively associated with “mating effort”, or the initiation and establishment of sexual relationships (Wingfield et al., 1990). Yet, because testosterone is negatively associated with nurturance (van Anders et al., 2011), high levels of testosterone may be incompatible with relationship maintenance. For instance, par...
Article
People view monogamy as the optimal form of partnering and stigmatize consensual non-monogamous (CNM) relationships. Likewise, attachment researchers often equate romantic love (and security) with sexual exclusivity. Interestingly, a sizeable minority of people engage in CNM and report high levels of satisfaction. Across two studies, we examined ho...
Article
Full-text available
"Admit it: We have crushes, we have sexual fantasies, and sometimes we want to act on them—even when those crushes and fantasies aren’t about our current romantic partner. Most of the time, we ignore these crushes and our fantasies go unfulfilled. For some, cheating seems like an option. However, for others, it is totally okay to pursue these crush...
Article
Full-text available
We generated an inventory of 27 interpersonal behaviors and examined the extent to which participants judged each behavior as cheating on a long-term partner. We predicted variation in these judgments based on participant sex and attachment insecurity. Ratings for items ranged considerably; participants rated sexual behaviors as most indicative of...
Article
Two studies were conducted to examine theoretical questions about children’s and adults’ memory for emotional visual stimuli. In Study 1, 7- to 9-year-olds and adults (N = 172) participated in the initial creation of the Developmental Affective Photo System (DAPS). Ratings of emotional valence, arousal, and complexity were obtained. In Study 2, DAP...
Article
Touch is a critical factor in intimate bonds between romantic partners. Although cuddling is a key expression of intimacy, it has received little empirical attention. Past research suggests that cuddling has some sexual aspects (e.g., it increases testosterone [T]), but there are theoretical reasons to expect cuddling to also involve nurturant inti...
Article
We examined changes in and correlates of 3 kinds of narcissism-hypersensitivity, willfulness, and autonomy-during middle adulthood. Few studies have examined narcissistic personality traits beyond young adulthood, and none has assessed longitudinal changes in narcissism during midlife. In a sample of 70 college-educated women, we found that observe...
Article
Although attachment dynamics are thought to be important across the life span, relatively few studies have examined attachment processes beyond young adulthood. Extant research on age differences in attachment orientation has yielded conflicting results and interpretations. The purpose of this study was to provide a more complete picture of age-rel...
Article
The authors propose a novel model of autobiographical memory development that features the fundamental role of attachment orientations and negative life events. In the model, it is proposed that early autobiographical memory derives in part from the need to express and remember negative experiences, a need that has adaptive value, and that attachme...
Article
The current study examined neuroendocrine processes associated with emotional intimacy in humans. Despite the importance of this aspect of close relationships, emotional intimacy has received much less attention in neuroendocrine research compared to other aspects of close relationships. In this study, participants viewed movie clips depicting an e...
Article
Single individuals typically have higher testosterone compared to those who are partnered, suggesting that individual differences in testosterone are associated with mating effort, or people's motivation to find a sexual partner. However, there is less consistent evidence for links between testosterone and sociosexuality, or people's orientation to...
Article
The purpose of this study was to identify whether cortisol reactivity to a stressful laboratory event was related to children's memory of that event and to determine whether this relation was comparable to that observed in adults. Nine- to 12-year-olds and young adults completed an impromptu speech and math task during which repeated cortisol sampl...
Article
We examined adults’ long-term autobiographical memory for a dramatic life event—participating as a child victim in a criminal prosecution because of alleged sexual abuse. The study is unique in several ways, including that we had extensive documentation concerning the sexual abuse allegations, the children's involvement in their legal case, and oth...
Article
Narcissists' sensitivity to social evaluation should increase their physiological reactivity to evaluative stressors. However, very few studies have assessed the physiological correlates of narcissism. In this study, participants completed an evaluative laboratory stressor or a non-evaluative control task. Cortisol reactivity-a marker of the hypoth...
Article
Estradiol has been linked with attachment and caregiving processes in humans and other mammals; however, relations between estradiol and personality constructs relevant to intimate relationships have not yet been explored. In the present sample of 100 adult participants (52 men, 48 women), we examined endogenous estradiol levels in relation to two...
Article
This study examined the relationship between implicit power motivation (n Power) and salivary estradiol in women. Forty participants completed the Picture Story Exercise, a measure of n Power, and salivary estradiol levels from two saliva samples were determined with radioimmunoassay. We found that n Power was positively associated with estradiol l...
Article
Full-text available
People typically show excellent memory for information that is central to an emotional event but poorer memory for peripheral details. Not all studies demonstrate memory narrowing as a result of emotion, however. Critically important emotional information is sometimes forgotten; seemingly peripheral details are sometimes preserved. To make sense of...
Chapter
Effects of Legal InvolvementReducing the Impact of Legal StressorsConclusion and ImplicationsReferences
Article
The present study concerns types of attorney representation for maltreated children involved in juvenile court actions in the state of California. The aims of the research were to document the different types of representation used in dependency cases in 2000 (e.g., public defender, District Attorney, private firms) and to evaluate these types of r...
Article
Full-text available
The present study investigated attachment-related differences in emotional processing biases. Consistent with the proposal that avoidant individuals limit attention to potentially distressing information, attachment avoidance was associated with reductions in emotional Stroop (ES) interference for attachment-related words (e.g., intimate, loss). Th...
Article
The purpose of the current study was to determine whether parents make unrealistic evaluations of children and what factors predict these evaluations. Parents of 5- and 6-year-olds rated their child's risk for various positive and negative outcomes, temperament, and health and behavior problems. Parents also completed an adult attachment measure. P...
Article
Full-text available
In the present study, we examined the prevalence and predictors of subjective forgetting (i.e., self-reported amnesia) of child sexual abuse (CSA). Adults who, as children, were involved as victims in legal prosecutions were questioned about their CSA experiences, which had been documented in the 1980s, and about lost and recovered memory of those...
Article
Full-text available
Attachment avoidance has been associated with impairments in memory for material with emotional, attachment-related themes (e.g., loss). In the present study the author investigated the source and extent of these memory deficits by examining working memory capacity for attachment-related and nonattachment-related material. Avoidance was associated...
Article
Full-text available
In this study, observers' abilities to detect lies in children and adults were examined. Adult participants observed videotaped interviews of both children and adults either lying or telling the truth about having been touched by a male research assistant. As hypothesized, observers detected children's lies more accurately than adults' lies; howeve...
Article
In this study, observers' abilities to detect lies in children and adults were examined. Adult participants observed videotaped interviews of both children and adults either lying or telling the truth about having been touched by a male research assistant. As hypothesized, observers detected children's lies more accurately than adults' lies; howeve...
Article
Full-text available
In the present study, attachment-related differences in long-term memory for a highly emotional life event, child sexual abuse (CSA), were investigated. Participants were 102 documented CSA victims whose cases were referred for prosecution approximately 14 years earlier. Consistent with the proposal that avoidant individuals defensively regulate th...
Article
We report a longitudinal study of long-term outcomes of participating in criminal cases following child sexual abuse (CSA). In the 1980s, 218 child victim/witnesses took part in a study of short-term sequelae of legal involvement. Approximately 12 years later, 174 of them, as well as a comparison group of 41 matched individuals with no CSA history,...
Article
Full-text available
Prospective studies of adults' memories of documented child sexual abuse (CSA) reveal that the majority of individuals remember their victimization. However, the accuracy of these memories has rarely been investigated scientifically. The present study examined predictors of memory accuracy and errors 12 to 21 years after abuse ended for individuals...
Article
Prospective studies of adults' memories of documented child sexual abuse (CSA) reveal that the majority of individuals remember their victimization. However, the accuracy of these memories has rarely been investigated scientifically. The present study examined predictors of memory accuracy and errors 12 to 21 years after abuse ended for individuals...
Article
Full-text available
Despite widespread use of self-report measures of adult attachment, relatively little research has explored the predictive utility of these measures in the domain of parent-child relationships. The present study examined the association between self-reported attachment style and parental responsiveness during a stressful event. Children and their p...
Chapter
This chapter explores the memory effects of trauma, emotional remembering by children, the long-term durability of emotional memories, and other topics from the perspective of the legal system, asking how eyewitnesses to crimes remember the events they have observed (or, in many cases, the events in which they were victimized). Of special importanc...
Article
Full-text available
The present study investigated variables associated with delay of disclosure of child sexual abuse and tested a model of time to disclosure. Data were obtained for 218 alleged child sexual abuse victims whose cases had been referred to District Attorneys' Offices. Five variables were posited to influence the delay between an abusive event and child...
Article
Previous research indicates that many adults (nearly 40%) fail to report their own documented child sexual abuse (CSA) when asked about their childhood experiences. These controversial results could reflect lack of consciously accessible recollection, thus bolstering claims that traumatic memories may be repressed. In the present study, 175 individ...
Article
Previous research indicates that many adults (nearly 40%) fail to report their own documented child sexual abuse (CSA) when asked about their childhood experiences. These controversial results could reflect lack of consciously accessible recollection, thus bolstering claims that traumatic memories may be repressed. In the present study, 175 individ...
Article
There has been increasing interest in children's abilities to report memories of and resist misleading suggestions about distressing events. Individual differences among children and their parents may provide important insight into principles that govern children's eyewitness memory and suggestibility for such experiences. In the present study, 51...
Chapter
This important book broadens our conceptualization of the topic of children and law, addressing a wide-ranging set of issues in need of attention. The authors confront many difficult questions such as: Are the rights that our nation's laws ascribe to children commensurate with their capabilities and needs? How should laws governing the punishment o...
Article
Degree granted in Psychology. Thesis (Ph. D.)--University of California, Davis, 2005.

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