Abstract

Objective: Relationship status (e.g., married, single) is linked to mental and physical health outcomes. However, beyond this static, binary measure of relationship stability it is not known how different patterns of moving in and out of these static statuses effect outcomes. Therefore, using a recent, nationally representative sample of emerging adults, the present longitudinal study examined patterns of relationship stability among young people between the ages of 17 and 27 and their links with mental and physical health outcomes. Method: Using mixed-method, participants’ romantic relationship status was coded across five waves into types of relationship stability patterns. Then, using quantitative methods, we determined if relationship stability pattersn differed on self-reported measures of mental health (i.e., psychological distress), physical health (e.g., chronic illness, self-reported health), and health behaviors (e.g., sleep, binge drinking, smoking) using appropriate regression models (i.e., linear, Poisson, logistic). Results: Participants (N = 694) were five relationship stability patterns were determined: Stable Single (42.6%), Stable Committed (2.5%), Moving into Commitment (34.2%), Moving Out of Commitment (3.9%), and In and Out of Commitment (16.9%). Linear regression analyses revealed that these relationship stability patterns differed on health outcomes, including mental health, self-reported physical health, and problematic health behaviors such as alcohol use. Conclusions: Emerging adults in the Moving Out of Commitment group seemed to fair the worst compared to those in the Stable Single group across various mental and physical health problems, while those in the Moving In And Out of Commitment group only fared worse on problematic health behaviors.

How to Cite
N. E. ROBERSON, JERIKA NORONA, JENNIFER BISHOP, DEBORAH WELSH, Patricia. The Influence of Relationship Stability Patterns in Emerging Adulthood on Chronic Illness and Health Behaviors. Global Journal of Human-Social Science Research, [S.l.], dec. 2017. ISSN 2249-460X. Available at: <https://socialscienceresearch.org/index.php/GJHSS/article/view/2373>. Date accessed: 08 mar. 2021.