Non-dating Individuals Less Likely to be Depressed, in Addition to Having better Social Skills

A new research of the University of Georgia has determined that individuals who don’t date are less likely to be depressed and have better social skills. The study which was published in the Journal of School Health elaborates for the first time that not dating can also prove to be beneficial, and such teens have rather fared better.

Reports allege that adolescents who were not involved in relationships during the middle or high school years also had good social skills and suffered less depression, in addition to faring better in comparison to peers who dated.

According to Brooke Douglas, a doctoral student in health promotion at UGA’s College of Public Health, explained one of the main reasons why the current study was conducted. If dating was regarded as essential and normal for an individual’s development, what would that suggest about the adolescents who chose to not date? Were these to be then regarded as social misfits, or as individuals who are maladjusted?

In order to study this hypothesis, experts carried out a research on 10th graders over a period of seven years who dated infrequently. The study examined the social and emotional skills of such individuals in comparison to those of their peers.

The results were compared with the 2013 study spearheaded by Orpinas, which focused on adolescents from sixth to 12 grade from the Northeast Georgia. Dating versus non-dating individuals answered an array of questions based on social and emotional factors, including their relationships with friends, at home and school, suicidal and depression thoughts, etc. Sources determine, non-dating individuals had better interpersonal skills as compared to their dating peers. Furthermore, they were also less likely to be depressed.

“In summary, we found that non-dating students are doing well and are simply following a different and healthy developmental trajectory than their dating peers,” commented Orpinas, a professor of health promotion and behavior.

“While the study refutes the notion of non-daters as social misfits, it also calls for health promotion interventions at schools and elsewhere to include non-dating as an option for normal, healthy development.”