We conducted two studies to examine how a potential helper is affected by having a communal orientation toward a relationship with a potential recipient and by the potential recipient's sadness. We hypothesized that (a) having a communal orientation would increase helping and that (b) people high in communal orientation, but not others, would respond to a potential recipient's sadness by increasing helping. These hypotheses were tested in two studies. In Study 1, individual differences in communal orientation toward relationships were measured by using a new communal orientation scale reported for the first time in this article. In Study 2, manipulations were used to lead subjects to desire either a communal or an exchange relationship with another person. In both studies, subjects were exposed to a sad person or to a person in a neutral mood whom they were given a chance to help. As hypothesized, in both studies communally oriented subjects helped the other significantly more than did others. Also as hypothesized, in both studies communally oriented subjects but not others, increased helping in response to the other person's sadness although this effect reached statistical significance only in the second study.