Gender-typed attributes and marital satisfaction in Mexican immigrant couples: a latent profile approach

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Claire Wood (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Heather Helms

Abstract: Informed by socio-ecological and dyadic approaches to understanding marriage, the current study examined the patterning of gender-typed attributes in the relationships of 120 Mexican immigrant couples and their links with spouses' reports of marital satisfaction. Results from previous studies suggest that marital satisfaction is positively predicted by spouses' gender-typed attributes (i.e. femininity, androgyny) as well as within-couple similarity in gender-typed attributes (e.g., Antill, 1983; Gaunt, 2006; Zammichieli, Gilroy, & Sherman, 1988). However, studies of gender-typed attributes have rarely been expanded beyond White and middle-class samples and only scarcely studied in a dyadic context. The lack of research on the links between spouses' gender-typed attributes and marital satisfaction among non-White or immigrant couples is problematic given the unique socio-ecological niches these couples often inhabit--contexts that may place demands on spouses that challenge gendered and culturally bound notions of masculinity and femininity (Helms, 2013; Helms, Supple, & Proulx, 2011). Latent profile analysis (LPA) was used to identify a typology of couples based on spouses' self-reported masculine and feminine attributes. Three couple profiles were identified base on the LPA: (a) Androgynous Couples, (b) Undifferentiated Couples, and (c) Mismatched Couples. Results from a mixed model ANCOVA showed profile differences in couples' marital satisfaction, suggesting that spouses in the undifferentiated couples group were the least satisfied. Findings challenge stereotypical and patriarchal depictions of Latino family relationships and propose a more complex understanding of Mexican-origin spouses' gender-typed attributes and their link with marital quality than has yet been portrayed in the literature.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2014
Couples, Gender, Immigrant, Marital Satisfaction, Mexican
Mexican American families $z North Carolina
Man-woman relationships $z North Carolina
Marriage $x Psychological aspects
Sex role $x Psychological aspects

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