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Abstract

A sample of 186 dating couples completed questionnaires in order to examine the relevance of attachment styles, romantic beliefs, self-esteem, and gender roles to relationship satisfaction. The aim was to assess whether male and female anxiety over abandonment and comfort with closeness, and interactions among them, predicted satisfaction beyond the contribution of the other variables. Using multiple-regression analysis, it was found that attachment styles successfully predicted satisfaction, after controlling for romantic beliers, self-esteem, and gender roles. Both partners were particularly dissatisfied when either partner suffered high anxiety over abandonment or low comfort with closeness. Implications for gender roles, relationship satisfaction, and attachment styles are discussed.