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The influence of prior relationship and level of engagement on perceptions of stalking and responsibility

The influence of Prior Relationship and Level of Engagement on Perceptions of Stalking and Responsibility

Introduction / Results / Discussion

This is a report detailing the development of a relationship between Sarah and John. The relationship is a scenario picked in order to communicate the message on trigger factors prior the relationship, engagement levels, and stalking perceptions. The participants were expected to follow the theme as explained in the discussion below.


The onset of the relationship was when Sarah and John met in the estate agents office. It occurred when Sarah was renewing the lease on her apartment at the estate agents where John worked. They were total strangers, and as Sarah left the office, John asked her out for a date, but Sarah thanked her and declined politely.

Thereafter, Sarah and John became colleagues working at the same company the estate agents. At this time, they were working in different departments but met frequently. As time went by, they started attending company events together and shared most of their time thus became acquainted. After six months of the time, Sarah joined the company; John asked her out for a date, but she refused for the second time. Even though they had known each other for the whole period, Sarah did not see the reason for going out with John; she felt uncomfortable and thus needed time for herself.

Sarah became Johns ex-partner and vice versa. Throughout the period they worked together at the estate agents company as an acquaintance, they became close together. Sarah gave in to John’s proposal. They established a romantic relationship. As from these, both Sarah and John dated for six months. Unfortunately, Sarah ended up the relationship simply because things did not work out as both wanted different things all together. Their relationship was thus a process that came out from scratch and ended up being something substantial though it finally ended up unexpectedly.

The participants within this study involve the people the within a certain group. These participants were just selected to represent a scenario whose role was to play the part of Sarah and John. They were expected to follow what occurred and replicate their roles exactly as per what the scenario explained. The relationship between Sarah and John came up in a process. The participants were expected to follow processes and stages for the development are explained below.

  1. Level of influence

Initially, the relationship began through influence by different factors. The major factor here is their meeting. Once John saw Sarah when was renewing the lease on her apartment at the estate agents, she was intrigued by her beauty and thus was prompted to ask her for a date of which she declined. In addition to that, Sarah became johns acquaintance, as from these, they became close, and thus john got a chance to interact with her during the events held outside the office. Finally, she ended up giving in to the proposal and thus entered into a romantic relationship.

  1. Engagement level

The relationship builds up process between John and Sarah was a long one. In the first few months after their meeting, John pursued Sarah relentlessly. He made nearly 30 calls daily trying to reach her out. His persuasion to her was to reconsider her decision not to out for the date. In addition, he frequently asked her how her day has been. Sarah did not respond fully to his questions but did not reveal information concerning her personal life following constant inquiries from John. John used all means to capture Sarah’s attention, (Woodruff, 2010).

He sent joke emails to Sarah using the office account, but Sarah did not reply. Luckily, Sarah got a chance to board the same bus with Sarah when they returned from a function. They had a long conversation whereby he told her how he liked her. Sarah told him blankly that she was not interested and that he should stop contacting her. John did not stop but continued contacting her severally.

  1. Perceptions of stalking

This section aims to answer the question on perceptions to stalking items.

For the relationship between Sarah and john, stalking is the key factor that enabled John to get attention from Sarah as per the definition of stalking explained by Cass (2011). John made repeated contacts directly towards Sarah in the bid to get her attention. In the case of John and Sarah, the behavior is considered as defiant stalking, Catalano & Sanders, 2012. Staking at all points necessitates police intervention as it creates a sense of insecurity on the party being staked. In the case of Sarah and John, the intervention of the police is not required in that Sarah already knew what john wanted from her.

It is in extreme cases that the conviction of the police is required when stalking is noted. In Johns and Sarah’s scenario, it was not that extreme that would prompt her to let the police intervene as explained by James & Farnham, (2003). It is noted that at the beginning of the relationship, John was a nuisance to Sarah’s personal life thus brought discomfort to her. When John started to stalk Sarah, she had already known the intention that he had since the day they met. In this case, she was assured that the stalking could not lead to any form of violence but the just desire for a romantic relationship.

  1. Perceptions of responsibility

Just as the participants entered into a relationship, they were then to be ready for the responsibility that comes with that. In this case, Sarah remains to be blamed for giving into the relationship. She accepted then finally ended it thus heartbreaking John, though she earlier stated that she was not completely interested communicating with him. John is not to be blamed for the relationship because in clear terms he achieved what he wanted as explained by, Scott, & Sheridan, (2011).


This is a study on the influence of prior relationship and level of engagement on perceptions of stalking and responsibility. In the study, there were two participants, Sarah and John. John and Sarah were working in the same company and after their meeting, they got into a relationship . Thus they could form a perfect match for the study, (Pallant, 2005). The selected participants act as the representation of a general population comprising of people who get into a relationship through a process that involves some level of influence, engagement, stalking, and finally, each one becomes responsible for the occurrence.

This study is just a restriction of two members whose action is studied as one pursues the other. Getting the participants to participate was on a random selection of a thought process or a scenario to represent real occurrence. This study adopts the use of adults, man, and a woman who have reached the age of engaging in a relationship. Each of the participants was assigned their roles to represent a scenario of a real occurrence.


The material for this study is a form of a scenario play or short film seen as seen Protection against Stalking. (2012).The participants were involved in a play whose theme was centered on the process of developing a relationship. The set up was in the real estate agent office where both of them were employed. They were to depict the stalking behavior, the engagement level in a relationship and the perceptions of responsibility, Protection against Stalking, 2012).


The aim of the scenario in the play is to explore the themes on the influence of prior relationship and level of engagement on perceptions of stalking and responsibility Network for Surviving Stalking. (2009). The participants in the office were then given a task to explore these themes in the play in the form of getting into the relationship, (Mullen& Purcell, 2001). Sarah played hard to get with the aim of making John stalk on her. She also made john it hard for john to understand her personal life so as to achieve the aim of engagement on perceptions on stalking. Finally, she ended the relationship in order to fulfill the theme of responsibility.


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