Keywords

Relationships, romantic relationships, partners, physical health, mental health, physical and mental health

Abstract

This study tested the hypothesis that, analogous to married individuals, college students in committed romantic relationships experience greater well-being than single college students. In a sample of 1,621 college students, individuals in committed relationships experienced fewer mental health problems and were less likely to be overweight/obese. There were no significant differences between groups in frequency of physical health problems. Examination of 2 models suggested that being in a committed romantic relationship decreases problematic outcomes largely through a reduction in sexual partners, which in turn decreases both risky behaviors and problematic outcomes. These results are discussed in the context of how premarital dating relationships may contribute to understanding of the observed association between marriage and well-being.

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date

2010

Publisher

Personal Relationships

Language

English

College

Family, Home, and Social Sciences

Department

Psychology

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