Attachment style, relationship satisfaction, intimacy, loneliness, gender role beliefs, and the expression of authentic self in romantic relationships
Downing, Vanessa Lynn
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The current study sought to explore the possible facilitators and inhibitors of the expression of authentic self in heterosexual romantic relationships, and specifically, to increase understanding about the possible influence of gender role attitudes. Additionally, the study sought to assess the factor structure of the Authenticity in Relationships Scale (AIRS; Lopez & Rice, 2006)--initially normed on a college population--in a sample of post-college adults involved in a range of romantic attachments. A non-experimental field survey explored how variables of interest related to each other in a sample 241 male and female heterosexuals between the ages of 25 and 38. Analyses revealed strong associations between authenticity and attachment style, relationship satisfaction, intimacy, loneliness, and egalitarianism. Findings also included significant differences in regards to authenticity, relationship satisfaction, intimacy, and loneliness among participants depending on relationship type. Exploratory factor analysis suggested that Lopez & Rice's two-factor solution did not hold for this non-college sample, and suggested a one-factor solution for the AIRS. Implications of the study and suggestions for future research building upon the findings are discussed.