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If the address matches an existing you will receive an with instructions to reset your password. If the address matches an existing you will receive an with instructions to retrieve your username. Address correspondence to: Dr. This study explores how attachment orientation i. We collected data from current dating app users. Logistic regression analyses showed a decreased likelihood for people with higher scores on attachment anxiety to meet up with other dating app users.
In a similar vein, a decreased likelihood to meet up with other dating app users while in a committed relationship was found for both individuals with higher scores on anxious attachment and avoidant attachment. Finally, higher scores on anxious attachment and avoidant attachment were ificantly related to reporting a higher of romantic relationships and friendships with other dating app users, whereas only higher scores on anxious attachment were related to reporting a higher of casual sexual experiences while being single and while in a committed relationship.
Dating applications apps have become one of the most common methods of pursuing a romantic or sexual partner. Because of the prevalence of smartphones, adults now have access to their entire dating market from the palms of their hands. Research has shown that 15 percent of American adults have used dating sites or mobile apps, 1 and that the most popular way for heterosexual couples to meet is through online platforms.
For instance, Tinder users tend to be more extraverted, more open to new experiences, 3 and more sexually permissive 4 compared to nonusers. Attachment theory is a useful framework with which to examine differences in the partner selection process; thus, it may explain users' behavioral tendencies related to dating apps.
Originally developed by Bowlby to explain the close bonds between children and their caregivers, a person's attachment orientation describes the cognitive and behavioral patterns of responding to close relationships. People higher in attachment anxiety enjoy physical intimacy, but have concerns about abandonment, whereas people higher in attachment avoidance tend to dislike physical and emotional intimacy in close relationships.
So far, studies investigating the association between attachment orientation and online dating are both scarce and, at times, contradictory. While Blackhart et al.
The opposite was found for people with higher scores on avoidant attachment. Just as attachment orientation may predict one's likelihood of using dating apps, it may also explain how users approach these dating apps. research has identified 13 different motives for why people use dating apps. These motives describe users who actively seek out others for social purposes e. For example, extraversion is negatively associated with using Tinder for relationship seeking, whereas conscientiousness is positively associated with using Tinder to find a romantic partner i. Contrarily, conscientiousness is negatively associated with using Tinder to pass time or for entertainment purposes, whereas extraversion is positively associated with this rather passive motive.
Individuals high in attachment anxiety tend to desire affiliation and fear rejection. In other words, mobile dating apps can be perceived as easily accessible tools to evaluate one's own mate value and make one feel like a desirable partner.
On the other hand, the degree of intimacy that comes with close relationships often makes avoidantly-attached individuals uncomfortable. Because of this, they have been found to be less likely to enter committed relationships 13 and more likely to engage in casual sex.
In addition, given that anxiously-attached people desire connection and avoidantly-attached people are averse to closeness and intimacy, 7 we hypothesize that anxiously-attached individuals will be more likely to Adult searching online dating Boston face-to-face meetings with other dating app users, whereas avoidantly-attached individuals will be less likely to do so.
Moreover, given that anxiously-attached individuals report rapid romantic involvement, 16 we predict that people with higher scores on attachment anxiety will also report more romantic relationships derived from dating apps. Finally, as research suggests, more avoidant people are more interested in alternatives to their relationship partner, have more positive attitudes toward cheating on their partner, and are less committed to their partners, 17 we hypothesize that having a higher score on attachment avoidance might increase the likelihood of using a mobile dating app to meet others, while in a committed relationship.
In total, dating app users The majority of participants The majority of dating app users reported using Tinder An adapted version of the Tinder Motives Scale 10 was used to measure motives for using mobile dating apps Table 1. Table 1.
Note: All items are rated on a 7-point Likert scale, ranging from 1 strongly disagree to 7 strongly agree. Participants who had met another dating app user face-to-face First, we tested whether attachment orientation was positively associated with mobile dating app motives using hierarchical regression analyses with adjusted p values.
Table 2 shows that attachment anxiety was positively associated with all dating app motives, whereas attachment avoidance was only positively associated with the traveling motive and negatively associated with the entertainment motive. Table 2. Next, logistic regression analyses were used to examine whether attachment orientation predicted having a face-to-face meeting and having a face-to-face meeting with other dating app users while in a committed relationship Table 3. Table 3. Finally, regression analyses reported in Table 4 show that attachment anxiety and avoidance are positively associated with users' reported of romantic relationships and friendships with other dating app users.
In addition, a higher score on attachment anxiety, but not attachment avoidance, was positively associated with engaging in casual sexual interactions, both while being single and in a committed relationship. Table 4. This study contributed to recent research on attachment and mobile dating and confirmed that attachment theory is an effective framework for understanding dating app motives and outcomes. Consistent with research, 9 those with higher scores on attachment anxiety are likely to seek out emotional intimacy and attempt to form relationships, and thus embody a variety of dating app motives, including relationship seeking, sexual experience, and flirting, were relevant to them.
In contrast to our hypothesis, a higher score on attachment avoidance was not ificantly linked to using dating apps for casual sex, nor did they report an increased of casual sexual partners met through dating apps.
Yet, the literature demonstrating a link between attachment avoidance and casual sex seems to be conflicting, as some researchers have pointed out that avoidant individuals have lower s of casual and committed sexual partners. Interestingly, people with higher scores on attachment avoidance were more likely to use dating apps while traveling.
This may be a driving force for more avoidant individuals because it is harder to create meaningful or long-lasting connections while traveling as the user will have to return to his or her home country at some point.
Contrary to our hypothesis, people with higher scores on attachment avoidance were less likely to use dating apps for passing time or entertainment purposes. It is possible that spending time on a dating app, and therefore increasing the likelihood of receiving matches and chat messages, is less entertaining and more stressful for someone who is averse to making emotional connections.
Dating apps can offer a low-risk, convenient way to initiate relationships for people struggling with social anxieties 20 ; however, individuals scoring high on attachment avoidance may not be engaged with dating apps for their convenience and ability to mitigate boredom, but instead seek out other entertainment tools that do not necessarily include social interactions such as viewing their favorite television show. Although we predicted that those with higher scores on attachment anxiety would be more likely to meet up with others on dating apps, they exhibited a decreased likelihood of meeting up with others.
Similarly, our findings show a decreased likelihood to meet up with other dating app users while in a committed relationship for those with higher scores on both avoidant and anxious attachment. Research has established that anxiously-attached people are more willing to commit and seek out romantic partners because of their desire to maintain close relationships.
Research has also found that, although insecurely-attached individuals do indeed embody some desirable qualities that attract others, 21 anxiously-attached individuals may frequently seek reassurance or appear to be hypervigilant about potential rivals, 11 making it difficult to progress the online interaction into a face-to-face meeting.
It is also important to note that research has shown that dating app use does not necessarily lead to face-to-face interactions, as only slightly more than half of Tinder users in a large sample reported having face-to-face meetings with other users. Finally, while those with higher scores on attachment anxiety were less inclined to meet up with others, our show that when they did meet up with others, they were more likely to report an increased of romantic relationships, casual sexual encounters, and friendships, and an increased of casual sexual encounters while in a committed relationship themselves.
These findings imply that even though attachment anxiety is not ificantly associated with meeting face-to-face with other dating app users, once mobile daters with higher scores on attachment anxiety decide to meet up with other dating app users, the face-to-face meeting is likely to develop into some form of meaningful romantic, friendly, or sexual connection rather than remaining a futile encounter. In addition, a recent study examining attachment orientation and casual sex showed that both men and women who score high on anxious attachment report more casual sex.
For instance, researchers found a ificant relationship between anxious attachment and Facebook solicitant behaviors i. According to our findings, anxious attachment is a strong predictor for many mobile dating motives and outcomes, suggesting that despite their decreased likelihood of meeting face-to-face with other dating app users, individuals with higher scores on attachment anxiety are interested in pursuing any form of intimacy. In contrast, our findings suggest that individuals with higher scores on attachment avoidance do not necessarily follow a specific pattern.
Some who exhibit attachment avoidance are fearful of intimacy, and some want to avoid intimacy at great lengths. Perhaps the nonificant findings reflect this variability. Future research could build on these findings and further explore how avoidantly-attached individuals could use mobile dating apps differently. This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie grant agreement No The opinions expressed in this document reflect only the authors' view.
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