"Without flirting it wouldn't be a marriage" : the relationship between flirting, relational maintenance and marital satisfaction
Qualitative interviews were used to gather data from nine married couples about their flirtatious communication behaviors with each other. The husband and wife in each couple were interviewed separately. Flirtation was examined to understand its effect on marital satisfaction and to explore its potential utility as a relational maintenance strategy in marriage. Data revealed that couples felt that flirtation was important in maintaining their marriage as a tactic for enacting assurances, positivity and conflict management and that flirtation had a relationship to the satisfaction they experienced in their marriage. In addition, sex differences were discussed. These findings expand the existing research on flirtation, relational maintenance and marital satisfaction.