Correlations Between Parent-Child Relationship Qualities and Romantic Relationship Qualities During Emerging Adulthood

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Alexus Curry Sarah Whitton


By Alexus Curry, Neuroscience

Advisor: Sarah Whitton

Presentation ID: PM_A13

Abstract: Studies have shown that a positive relationship between a child and their parent during childhood predicts that when that child reaches early adulthood, they will also have positive relationships with romantic partners. However, research suggests that there is a transition that takes place in the parent-child relationship when an adolescent becomes an emerging adult (Scheinfiled & Worely, 2018). Relational turbulence often occurs within the relationship between the parent and child during emerging adulthood. During this time, parents may begin to play less of a role on their children's romantic partnerships. Therefore, it is not clear if the quality of the parent-child relationship during emerging adulthood will be associated with concurrent romantic relationship quality. This study examines whether the quality of the relationship between emerging adults and their parents is associated with the quality of an emerging adult's romantic relationship. To test the hypothesis, we ran a correlation analysis between the parent-child relationship with investment size, satisfaction level and commitment in the romantic relationship. We expect parent-child relationship quality during emerging adulthood to be positively associated with romantic relationship quality during emerging adulthood. A sample of 484 undergraduate students between the ages of 18 and 25 who were currently involved in a dating relationship were administered an Inventory of Parent and Peer Attachment survey, parent subscale, that assess an individual's perception of their relationships with parents. Our results showed that the parent-child relationship was positively correlated with satisfaction levels in the romantic relationship but not with investment or commitment levels.

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