Ideal Dating Styles and Meanings of Romantic Relationships Among White and Latino High School Students: A Multi-Method Approach

Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/194422
Title:
Ideal Dating Styles and Meanings of Romantic Relationships Among White and Latino High School Students: A Multi-Method Approach
Author:
Rankin, Lela Antoinette
Issue Date:
2006
Publisher:
The University of Arizona.
Rights:
Copyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
Abstract:
The conceptualization of intimacy within adolescent romantic relationships has typically taken a linear approach: Adolescents experience initial romantic encounters within a group context and progress towards an exclusive dyadic dating relationship. This study uses a person-centered approach and conceptualizes adolescent romance as multi-dimensional.In Study 1, a large, nationally representative dataset (the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health) was used to classify 10th and 11th grade adolescents into ideal romantic relationship styles via Latent Class Analysis. Four classed emerged: Concealers (3.6%; n=276), Abstainers (32.6%; n=2508), Engagers (51.4% of the sample; n= 3955), and Family Builders (12.5%; n=959). Concealers, primarily non-White ethnicities, preferred low social/emotional involvement but moderate sexual activities. Most adolescents with same-sex attractions were concealers. Concealers reported the greatest miss-match between ideal and real relationship activities. Abstainers, predominantly females, preferred: high social/emotional activities, to talk less about contraception/STDs, and low sexual activities. Engagers, predominantly male and White, scored highest on all social, emotional, and physical activities (exception of 'seeing less of friends', 'sex', 'pregnancy', and 'marriage'). Family builders, overly-represented by Latino, preferred high social, emotional, and physical dimensions including seeing less of friends, sexual intercourse, pregnancy, and marriage. Moderate discrepancies occurred between ideal and real activities.Study 2 was a focus group study of White and Latino adolescents (N=75) entering 10th through 12th grades. Using a symbolic interactionism theoretical framework, adolescents described four types of sexual relationships within their social subjective realities: Going-out, dating, friends with benefits, and hooking up. Going-out relationships, an exclusive and emotionally/physically close relationship, were the most easily described and the most intense and committed relationships. Dating relationships, however, were the most common type of sexual relationship and were less easily defined, partially due to the ambiguity of the relationship itself which is to 'get to know each other'. These relationships were somewhat exclusive and required less obligations. Friends with benefits (primarily physical relationships) and hooking up (single physical encounters) were casual relationships that required little to no commitment.Findings are interpreted via a developmental/feminist lens. Gender inequality and sexual double standards are potent forces that continue to shape adolescent's sexual behaviors, feelings, and experiences.
Type:
text; Electronic Dissertation
Keywords:
adolescence; dating; focus groups; latent class analysis; ideal romantic relationships; gender
Degree Name:
PhD
Degree Level:
doctoral
Degree Program:
Family & Consumer Sciences; Graduate College
Degree Grantor:
University of Arizona
Advisor:
Russell, Stephen T.
Committee Chair:
Russell, Stephen T.

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.language.isoENen_US
dc.titleIdeal Dating Styles and Meanings of Romantic Relationships Among White and Latino High School Students: A Multi-Method Approachen_US
dc.creatorRankin, Lela Antoinetteen_US
dc.contributor.authorRankin, Lela Antoinetteen_US
dc.date.issued2006en_US
dc.publisherThe University of Arizona.en_US
dc.rightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.en_US
dc.description.abstractThe conceptualization of intimacy within adolescent romantic relationships has typically taken a linear approach: Adolescents experience initial romantic encounters within a group context and progress towards an exclusive dyadic dating relationship. This study uses a person-centered approach and conceptualizes adolescent romance as multi-dimensional.In Study 1, a large, nationally representative dataset (the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health) was used to classify 10th and 11th grade adolescents into ideal romantic relationship styles via Latent Class Analysis. Four classed emerged: Concealers (3.6%; n=276), Abstainers (32.6%; n=2508), Engagers (51.4% of the sample; n= 3955), and Family Builders (12.5%; n=959). Concealers, primarily non-White ethnicities, preferred low social/emotional involvement but moderate sexual activities. Most adolescents with same-sex attractions were concealers. Concealers reported the greatest miss-match between ideal and real relationship activities. Abstainers, predominantly females, preferred: high social/emotional activities, to talk less about contraception/STDs, and low sexual activities. Engagers, predominantly male and White, scored highest on all social, emotional, and physical activities (exception of 'seeing less of friends', 'sex', 'pregnancy', and 'marriage'). Family builders, overly-represented by Latino, preferred high social, emotional, and physical dimensions including seeing less of friends, sexual intercourse, pregnancy, and marriage. Moderate discrepancies occurred between ideal and real activities.Study 2 was a focus group study of White and Latino adolescents (N=75) entering 10th through 12th grades. Using a symbolic interactionism theoretical framework, adolescents described four types of sexual relationships within their social subjective realities: Going-out, dating, friends with benefits, and hooking up. Going-out relationships, an exclusive and emotionally/physically close relationship, were the most easily described and the most intense and committed relationships. Dating relationships, however, were the most common type of sexual relationship and were less easily defined, partially due to the ambiguity of the relationship itself which is to 'get to know each other'. These relationships were somewhat exclusive and required less obligations. Friends with benefits (primarily physical relationships) and hooking up (single physical encounters) were casual relationships that required little to no commitment.Findings are interpreted via a developmental/feminist lens. Gender inequality and sexual double standards are potent forces that continue to shape adolescent's sexual behaviors, feelings, and experiences.en_US
dc.typetexten_US
dc.typeElectronic Dissertationen_US
dc.subjectadolescenceen_US
dc.subjectdatingen_US
dc.subjectfocus groupsen_US
dc.subjectlatent class analysisen_US
dc.subjectideal romantic relationshipsen_US
dc.subjectgenderen_US
thesis.degree.namePhDen_US
thesis.degree.leveldoctoralen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineFamily & Consumer Sciencesen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineGraduate Collegeen_US
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Arizonaen_US
dc.contributor.advisorRussell, Stephen T.en_US
dc.contributor.chairRussell, Stephen T.en_US
dc.contributor.committeememberKoerner, Sue Silverbergen_US
dc.contributor.committeememberCate, Rodney M.en_US
dc.identifier.proquest1554en_US
dc.identifier.oclc137356591en_US
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