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Old 10-23-2010, 07:55 AM
 
Location: Wu Dang Mountain
12,941 posts, read 18,656,722 times
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Psychologists have claimed there are two major methods of conditioning -

  • Respondent, where you perform two events simultaneously so as to create confusion in the mind of the subject as to cause and effect. Think Pavlov's dogs.
  • Operant, wherein consequences happening after an event determine the conditioning. Think training dolphins.
Recently I was wondering to what extent people indulge in operant conditioning in their relationships, specifically a method called extinction burst. Think about training that dolphin...

At first, Flipper gets a fish every time he jumps through the hoop. Cool. Then the trainer starts to cut back on the rewards - maybe giving a fish only every second or third jump. Soon, Flipper is not being rewarded at all - he's still jumping, but there's no fish! That's the extinction. Flipper starts going crazy, giving his best jumps, doing three-sixties and lighting himself on fire in mid-air (extinction burst behavior), when suddenly - FISH! He gets a big reward!!!

...and now Flipper is hooked for life. (By the way, this is the method described to me by a trainer in Florida, so I feel it has some verity.)

So, on to the main question - have you ever experienced extinction burst conditioning in your relationships? I'm not implying that you perform sex for fish (although if you do, there's NOTHING wrong with that! ); rather, has your GF/BF/spouse/whatever ever conditioned you with rewards for certain behavior, then began withholding those rewards while still expecting you to "perform", and then one day out of the blue given you a huge reward, for which you were eternally grateful (and probably eternally hooked)?
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Old 10-23-2010, 08:16 AM
 
Location: Emerald Coast, FL
5,172 posts, read 7,770,684 times
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No, but my ex tried aversion therapy techniques. When I was "good" she'd have sex with me, but she was so awful in bed it put me off sex - and her! Fortunately, the only lasting aversion was to her.
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Old 10-23-2010, 08:55 AM
 
3,261 posts, read 4,469,439 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SifuPhil View Post
So, on to the main question - have you ever experienced extinction burst conditioning in your relationships? I'm not implying that you perform sex for fish (although if you do, there's NOTHING wrong with that! ); rather, has your GF/BF/spouse/whatever ever conditioned you with rewards for certain behavior, then began withholding those rewards while still expecting you to "perform", and then one day out of the blue given you a huge reward, for which you were eternally grateful (and probably eternally hooked)?
Interesting question. I think what you describe, "extinction burst conditioning" is what likely happens in abusive and codependent relationships.... when one keeps trying to make their SO happy while waiting for that little treat/smile/good word.

So no, I've never experienced that, but I do believe that reaction to a behavior is a significant factor in encouraging and/or discouraging a behavior.
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Old 10-23-2010, 09:24 AM
 
5,148 posts, read 4,140,048 times
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Originally Posted by TaoistDude View Post
No, but my ex tried aversion therapy techniques. When I was "good" she'd have sex with me, but she was so awful in bed it put me off sex - and her! Fortunately, the only lasting aversion was to her.
Yup. Did you get married super young? Same thing happened to me. Actually not so much "awful" in bed as just no passion.
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Old 10-23-2010, 09:42 AM
 
39 posts, read 80,195 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TaoistDude View Post
No, but my ex tried aversion therapy techniques. When I was "good" she'd have sex with me, but she was so awful in bed it put me off sex - and her! Fortunately, the only lasting aversion was to her.

I'm just curious - what made her so awful in bed. If you don't mind..
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Old 10-23-2010, 11:12 AM
 
Location: Incognito
7,000 posts, read 17,993,439 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TaoistDude View Post
No, but my ex tried aversion therapy techniques. When I was "good" she'd have sex with me, but she was so awful in bed it put me off sex - and her! Fortunately, the only lasting aversion was to her.

When I'm a good PUSSYcat I get some of... myself.
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Old 10-23-2010, 11:15 AM
 
Location: Wu Dang Mountain
12,941 posts, read 18,656,722 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robee70 View Post
Interesting question. I think what you describe, "extinction burst conditioning" is what likely happens in abusive and codependent relationships.... when one keeps trying to make their SO happy while waiting for that little treat/smile/good word.
Excellent point - I hadn't thought of that particular example. Thank you!
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