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The study examines the associations between adolescents’ emotional and physical aspects of parasocial romantic relationships with media figures, idealized romantic beliefs, perceptions of a current dating partner, and relationship satisfaction. A two-study design included concurrent data from 153 adolescents ages 13–17 (55.6% female), and retrospective data from 274 college students ages 18–22 (79.8% female). Across both samples, emotional involvement in a PSRR was related to more idealized romantic beliefs. The intensity of emotional involvement with the media figure during adolescence was associated with lower relationship satisfaction and less favorable perceptions of a current romantic partner in college students. However, there were no significant associations between physical attraction to the media figure and relationship outcomes.


This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published in Journal of Children and Media, volume 12, issue 3, in 2018, available online at DOI: 10.1080/17482798.2018.1463917. It may differ slightly from the final version of record.


Informa UK Limited

Available for download on Friday, October 25, 2019