"The way things happen in romance novels don't truly reflect the way things happen in our subjectively real universe." -- Someone's comment during blog discussion on romance.
The truth of the matter is nothing reflects the "real world" of experience. Not fiction, not nonfiction, not news reports, not even media like film and TV. Reality is simply too complex.
A writer uses her own vision of the universe to create her fiction. That vision is ordered so that the complex chaos of reality makes sense and has a pattern.
If readers find her vision of reality to be truthful for them, (they buy into her vision and understand it), the writer has been successful. Part of that buying in while reading romance is seeing the complexity of the human personality and the male/female romantic relationship reflected in that writing.
Since so many women read romance, romance must reflect emotional, if not physical, reality for women.
In the same sense, most of us don't believe in vampires, but that doesn't prevent us from enjoying a good vampire romance. Those of us who analyze our responses to books see that the vampire romance reflects certain emotional needs and power issues for us so it is emotionally real although not "reality" real.