Determining Women’s Innermost Social Support Relationships
Chivers, DelRae Ruth
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This thesis examined how single women over forty determine their innermost social support relationship. A qualitative study of personal in-depth interviews was conducted with twelve single women ranging in ages 41 to 95 living in a small community in the United States upper Midwest area. The data gathered from the interviews reveal what fosters these women’s close relationships, specifically, those borne out of common situations, shared interests, and/or similar experiences. The data disclose what it is in their relationships that matters to them, illuminating dimensions that sustain closeness. Important aspects of their relationships include affection and reverence for each other along with honesty and authenticity. Additionally, trust, reciprocity, proximity, active communication, longevity and history, and finally, continued shared interests further the closeness in their relationships. The research explains aspects of the close relationships of twelve single women, over the age of forty, that bring forth meaningful support in their lives.