Longitudinal Interplay of Dating Anxiety and Romantic Cognitions and Behaviors from Adolescence to Young Adulthood
Date of Award
Wyndol C. Furman, Ph.D.
Adolescence, Compliance, Dating anxiety, Jealousy, Romantic competence, Social anxiety
Dating is normative in adolescence and young adulthood, but can be disrupted and distressing to individuals experiencing dating anxiety. Cognitive-behavioral theories suggest dating anxiety impacts romantic cognitions and behaviors, and romantic cognitions and behaviors impact dating anxiety. Thus far, investigators have been unable to explore the interplay between dating anxiety and romantic cognitions and behaviors because studies are limited by cross-sectional designs. The present study examined longitudinal associations between two types of dating anxiety (dating interactions and active intentions for dating) and romantic appeal, jealousy, and compliance during conflict. Two hundred adolescents participated in the study, which began in the 10th grade and continued for nearly eight years. Autoregressive latent trajectory models revealed appeal, jealousy and compliance were concurrently associated with dating anxiety from adolescence to young adulthood. These cognitions and behaviors also predicted changes in dating anxiety during adolescence and young adulthood, but not vice versa, with one exception. There was some evidence that anxiety predicts an increase in jealousy over time. The findings suggest cognitive modifications of romantic appeal and jealousy as well as social skills interventions to reduce jealous behavior and submissive compliance during conflict could have ongoing benefits for dating anxious individuals. Bidirectional associations between active intentions anxiety and jealousy also highlight jealousy's role in maintaining anxiety. This study moves the field toward an ultimate goal of enabling adolescents and young adults with dating anxiety to initiate, develop, and maintain beneficial romantic relationships.
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Winkles, Jessica K., "Longitudinal Interplay of Dating Anxiety and Romantic Cognitions and Behaviors from Adolescence to Young Adulthood" (2013). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 712.
Received from ProQuest