When it comes to teen dating, a new study found that students not in a romantic relationship had stronger social skills and were less depressed than their peers.
The study concluded that students who weren’t dating had significantly higher teacher ratings of social skills and leadership.
Additionally, it found that those students also had lower ratings of depression compared to peers who were dating.
All students had similar scores of positive relationships with friends and showed no difference in frequency of suicidal thoughts.
This study confirmed that teens who don’t conform to dating in adolescence end up faring well, and perhaps better than their peers in romantic relationships.
The authors of the study explain that dating in adolescence is considered normative behavior. These relationships could provide a valuable opportunity for important developmental tasks like identity formation and experimentation with sexuality.
The study was published in the Journal of School Health.