Research and Publications

My research interests center on the role of communication occurring within interpersonal and family relationships surrounding unpredictable, stressful, or transitional life events. These include events such as divorce, remarriage, and widowhood. Specifically, I examine how communication functions and affects individuals and relationships during these times of transition.

Some current research projects include:

I am currently working with widows and widowers from local retirement homes and assisted living communities to better understand the transition to widowhood. Through interviews we are investigating how communication influenced their expectations and adaptation to this. I will be working to create a resource for these communities.

I am also currently analyzing data collected from a survey that is investigating supportive communication during divorce. The project focuses on how interactions with family, friends, and the ex-spouse influence adjustment to being divorced.

Some recent publications include:

Wilder, S. E. (2012). A dialectical examination of remarriage dyadic communication and communication with social networks. Qualitative Research Reports in Communication, 13, 63-70. doi: 10.1080/17459435.2012.722163

Wilder, S. E. (2012). A comparative examination of reasons for and uses of uncertainty and topic avoidance in first and remarriage relationships. The Journal of Divorce & Remarriage, 53, 292-310. doi: 10.1080/10502556.2012.671660