Posted in: Love and Sex, Tattle

The relationship sabotage scale: quantifying why we undermine ourselves in love

Developed over the course of five studies, the relationship sabotage scale is designed to give analytical rigour to a term more common in pop culture

Do you feel constantly criticised by your partner? Do you sometimes check their social media profiles? Will you admit to them if you know you’re wrong about something?

If you strongly agree or disagree with some of these statements, you might find yourself with a high score on the Relationship Sabotage Scale.

1. I get blamed unfairly for issues in my relationship.
2. I often feel misunderstood by my partner.
3. I constantly feel criticised by my partner.
4. My partner makes me feel a lesser person.
5. I get upset about how much time my partner spends with their friends.
6. I believe that to keep my partner safe I need to know where my partner is.
7. I often get jealous of my partner.
8. I sometimes check my partner’s social media profiles
9. When I notice that my partner is upset, I try to put myself in their shoes so I can understand where they are coming from.
10. I am open to finding solutions and working out issues in the relationship.
11. I will admit to my partner if I know I am wrong about something.
12. I am open to my partner telling me about things I should do to improve our relationship.

Items should be randomised.

The scale is a 7-point Likert scale, ranging from 1 (strongly disagree) to 7 (strongly agree), is employed where high scores indicate high levels of the measured dimensions.

Defensiveness subscale = 1, 2, 3, 4.

Trust difficulty subscale = 5, 6, 7, 8.

Relationship skills subscale = 9, 10, 11, 12.

Reverse questions 9, 10, 11, and 12 to represent ‘Lack of relationship skills’.

Subscale scores between 4-11 (low)

Subscale scores between 12-20 (moderate)

Subscale scores between 21-28 (high)