Attachment styles and relationship quality: Actual, perceived, and ideal partner matching

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Attachment dimension matching in dating relationships and how matching relates to relationship quality were investigated. Across 2 studies, individuals preferred similar but more secure partners (lower anxiety and lower avoidance) as reflected by their ideals. In Study 1, greater similarity between the self and perceptions of the partner's anxiety predicted more positive relationship outcomes (e.g., relationship satisfaction, trust). Similar results were found for ideal–perceived partner avoidance similarity, whereas ideal–perceived partner anxiety similarity was less important. Study 2 involved both partners in the relationship and indicated that relationship outcomes were predicted by the actor's and partner's attachment dimensions as well as by ideal–perceived partner similarity and self–perceived partner similarity.

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