Is there any association that's not bi-directional?

I’m wondering why the data model of the associations is uni-directional…

SyncAssociations is useful but it seems to me this should be part of the model…

See New "Associations" Feature in RootsMagic 9 - YouTube

A bi-directional or (possibly a multi-directional) association could be good if it included different labels for each party, and date ranges would help too.

For example, a person become the guardian of several children. The association is a “guardianship”, one person is the “guardian”, and the others are the “wards” (or whatever labels the user wishes to use). As each child reaches adulthood, they are no longer part of the association.

Currently this can be handled by and event with different roles, but there is only one date range for the event, so a separate event must be used for each pair of guardian/ward.

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The one-sided Association offers more flexibility.

Sometimes there is no Association in return. (Like a superfan. The idol may be a big part of the superfan’s life. But generally, their idol isn’t aware of them at all.) Sometimes it is an asymmetric Association. (Godparent/Godchild). And sometimes it IS symmetrical. (Neighbor)

It WOULD be more time-efficient if the dialog supported the ability to add an Association in return in the same dialog though.


Associations in Gramps are based on the Gedcom standard. The ASSO tag is uni-directional:

 +1 PHRASE <Text>
 +1 ROLE <Enum>
 +2 PHRASE <Text>

The DNA Match association in the video is interesting example. It is bi-directional and doesn’t seem natural to model as an event or perhaps a new group concept.


As in a previous reply:

It would be helpful if the Association showed both parties of an Association and if there is any reciprocal/symmetrical association. Right now, it is ambiguous whether the Association describes the Selected person’s relationship with the Active person or the other way around. Having both shown would disambiguate this AND give the opportunity to set up a reciprocal relationship without popping yet another dialog.

Note that my example uses genderless “Godparent”/“Godchild”. The default being “Godfather” when associated person is female (or other) is awkward.

Godparent was added as a standard Role. It is intended for use with shared Baptism or Christening even.
See the “How do we harmonize custom data with a new standard feature?” discussion.

We could display reciprocal/symmetrical associations from backlinks without requiring the user to explicitly enter them. The idea of an association type is quite interesting.

Using an editor to modify two objects is not consistent with the way Gramps currently works and could cause technical issues.

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Wondered is there might be a better option than ‘none’ as the 3rd type?

  • Unidirectional
  • Unreturned
  • Unrequited
  • Unanswered
  • Blind
  • Unconditional
  • Unqualified
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