Exploring relationships during the transition to adulthood: how the past influences the present Public Deposited

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  • March 21, 2019
  • Lucas, Amy
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Sociology
  • In this study, I advance knowledge on our understanding of romantic relationship quality and parenting through three interrelated substantive chapters. Analyses use longitudinal, nationally representative data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health). In Chapter 2, I seek to better understand how relationship quality, parenting levels, and parenting behaviors may differ by immigrant generation and race/ethnicity. I find that romantic relationship quality does not vary by immigrant generation, but it does by race/ethnicity. In particular, Blacks report lower levels of romantic relationship quality, compared to whites. With regard to parenting levels, I do not find any differences by immigrant generation or race/ethnicity. There are differences, however, in language usage. Members of the first and second generation are less likely to speak English only at home to their children. In addition, Latinos are less likely than Asians to speak English only at home. In the third chapter of my dissertation, I examine the role that both socialization and personality have in the development of romantic relationship quality in young adulthood. Findings suggest that socialization operates independently of personality, and that both factors should be accounted for when trying to understand romantic relationship quality in young adulthood. Finally, in the fourth chapter of my dissertation, I seek to better understand romantic relationships in adolescence. In particular, I use latent class analysis to identify an adolescent's romantic relationship type and examine whether different types have a bearing on subsequent romantic relationship quality in adulthood. Results suggest that there are five types of adolescents: intense, affectionate, casual, multi-intense, and multi-varied. Furthermore, the results indicate that the membership in the affectionate class is the most positive with regard to romantic relationship quality in young adulthood, and that compared to membership in the affectionate class, membership in the multi-intense and multi-varied classes are the most negative with regard to romantic relationship quality.
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  • In Copyright
  • ... in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the Department of Sociology.
  • Harris, Kathleen Mullan
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  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

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