Quality Counts: Developmental Shifts in Associations Between Romantic Relationship Qualities and Psychosocial Adjustment

Document Type


Publication Date


Organizational Units

College of Arts Humanities and Social Sciences, Psychology


The present study assessed a developmental task theory of romantic relationships by examining associations between romantic relationship qualities and adjustment across 9 years using a community‐based sample of 100 male and 100 female participants (Mage Wave 1 = 15.83) in a Western U.S. city. Using multilevel modeling, the study examined the moderating effect of age on links between romantic relationship qualities and adjustment. Consistent with developmental task theory, high romantic quality was more negatively associated with internalizing symptoms and dating satisfaction during young adulthood than adolescence. Romantic relationship qualities were also associated with externalizing symptoms and substance use, but the degree of association was consistent across ages. The findings underscore the significance of romantic relationship qualities across development.

Compass Link


Publication Statement

Copyright held by author or publisher. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.

This document is currently not available here.