Marywood faculty discuss the psychology of love in special Valentine’s Day event

Sydney Toy, Community Editor

The Psi Chi Club incorporated psychology into Valentine’s Day this past holiday.

On Thursday Feb. 13, the club sponsored a Psychology of Love event held in the Comerford Theatre in the Center of Natural and Health Science. At the event, members of the Psychology Department spoke about different aspects of relationships and communication including the psychology of the perfect date, handling difficulties in a relationship, the different kinds of love we can have for each other and more.

Assistant Professor in the Psy.D Program, Dr. Lindsay A. Phillips, Psy.D, was a speaker at the event where she discussed conflict within romantic relationships and how to resolve those conflicts through communication.

“Communication is the key to resolving conflict. Couples that have compatible communication styles and validate each other do a better job of overcoming conflict and staying in the relationship,” said Philips.

Aside from being a professor at Marywood, Philips also is a practicing psychologist who works in couples therapy. Philips explained that much of what she applies in therapy sessions are the same things she talked about in her lecture.

Philips also explained that the more personal reason behind her interest in conflict resolution is her own marriage and the effect that it has on her family.

“I have two kids so I want [them] to see that even if my husband and I disagree, we can still love each other and work through it,” said Philips.

Freshman Speech Language Pathology Major Jacqueline Barics said she attended the event for both the extra credit opportunity and her genuine interest in what the speakers had to say.

“This isn’t really something that you think about too often,” said Barics. “I went to [the Psychology Behind Female Serial Killers event] as well and I think Psychology is really cool.”

Dr. Lindsay C. Morton Ph.D also spoke about the psychological ways to have the best first date and have a second date at the event. These included tips such as doing something physical or adrenaline rushing with your date, mimicking them, eating something sweet and physical touch.

Barics said she found the concept of mimicking while on a date incredibly interesting.

“Mimicking is involuntary. It’s something that you don’t even realize you’re doing. I don’t understand why we do it and I want to know why we do it,” said Barics.

Barics said she took the most away from the presentations about communication in relationships during times of conflict by Phillips and Dr. David Palmiter Jr. Ph.D.

“A lot of conflicts start with not being able to communicate and it’s a big factor in both platonic and romantic relationships. If you can’t communicate with another person then it really isn’t much of a relationship,” said Barics.

One of the concepts discussed in Palmiter’s presentation was the Communication Grid. The grid shows four examples of communication couples use during conflict, how certain types of communication work and mirror each other and which ones are successful.

Phillips said she believes communication is key in any relationship, romantic or not.

“We think of how to manage conflict in our day to day relationships as well,” said Phillips. “How can we be more validating of friends? If a friend and I have a disagreement, how can we remain friends? I think this is important to Marywood students because even if you’re early in a relationship, I think these are good things to think about.”

Philips also emphasized the importance of listening to the other person, validating their feelings and not thinking about our own sides of arguments during times of conflict.

“Listen to them, hear them out, validate them, give them empathy and try to come up with a solution that works for everyone,” said Philips.

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