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The Complicated Connection Between Closeness and the Quality of Romantic Relationships

Frost, D; LeBlanc, AJ; (2022) The Complicated Connection Between Closeness and the Quality of Romantic Relationships. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

Closeness is often considered synonymous with better quality romantic relationships. However, individual differences exist in the degree of closeness people desire in their relationships. This study examined the implications that discrepancies between actual and ideal closeness have for relationship quality in romantic couples. A questionnaire was administered to a sample of 103 cohabiting couples (N = 206) in the United States, who were randomly selected from a nationally representative survey panel. Dyadic analysis using Actor-Partner Interdependence Models with latent outcomes revealed that internal discrepancies between actual and idealized closeness were associated with poorer relationship quality for both individuals and their partners. These associations persisted above and beyond the effects of actual closeness and dyad-level differences in actual and ideal closeness. The association between closeness and relationship quality may be more individual than dyadic in nature, warranting renewed attention to the idiographic experience of closeness and its association with relational well-being.

Type: Article
Title: The Complicated Connection Between Closeness and the Quality of Romantic Relationships
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: http://www.uk.sagepub.com/journals/Journal200790
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Social Research Institute
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10134749
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