Access Type

Open Access Dissertation

Date of Award

January 2020

Degree Type


Degree Name




First Advisor

Stephanie S. Spielmann


Responsiveness is integral for successful relationship functioning (Reis & Shaver, 1988); however, it can be quite challenging to be a responsive partner (Reis & Patrick, 1996). Additionally, there may be an assumption that individuals need to be honest in their communication for their responses to be perceived as responsive. The goal of the present research is to determine if deceptive responses can be perceived as responsive and have beneficial consequences. The present research introduces the construct deceptive responsiveness, which we define as intentionally withholding information or providing false statements with the intent to make someone feel validated, supported, and cared for. Study 1 and Study 2 developed and validated a measure of deceptive responsiveness, demonstrating it is unique from other forms of deception. Using this new measure, we sought to understand if engagement in deceptive responsiveness was associated with positive intra- and inter-personal outcomes (e.g., satisfaction) during an in-lab task (Study 3) and in everyday relationship experiences (Study 4). These studies increase our understanding of deception and it’s impact on relationships, as well as, our understanding of responsiveness and the behaviors people engage in when trying to be responsive partners.