Romantic experience and psychosocial adjustment in middle adolescence

Wyndol Furman, Sabina Low, Martin J. Ho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

75 Scopus citations


Concurrent and longitudinal relations between the amount of romantic experience and psychosocial adjustment were examined in a 1-year study of a community based sample of 200 tenth graders. Adolescents, parents, and friends completed measures of psychosocial adjustment. The amount of romantic experience was associated with higher reports of social acceptance, friendship competence, and romantic competence; at the same time, romantic experience also was associated with greater substance use, more delinquent behavior, and more frequent genital sexual behavior. The amount of romantic experience predicted increased substance use and genital sexual behavior over a 1-year period, whereas social acceptance predicted increased romantic experience. These relations with romantic experience were significant even when genital sexual behavior and social acceptance were taken into account, underscoring the unique contribution of romantic experiences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)75-90
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2009
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology


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