A contextual process model of the associations among family vulnerabilities, life stressors, marital behavior, marital satisfaction, and personal well-being

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Christine M Proulx, PhD (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/
Heather Helms

Abstract: "The association between marital satisfaction and spouses' personal well-being is well established in the family studies and family psychology literatures. Although models specifying the ways in which contextual variables and life stressors influence both marital satisfaction and personal well-being exist in the literature on family studies, no model had been proposed that jointly considered these variables longitudinally. The purpose of the present study was to build on and extend previous theoretical models of marriage and personal well-being to explain (a) the concurrent association between family vulnerabilities, life stressors, and marital behavior; (b) the prospective influence of marital behavior on marital satisfaction; and (c) the prospective impact of one's own marital satisfaction on personal well-being. In addition, the present study addressed previous limitations in the literature by (a) using multiple reporters for the latent constructs under study, (b) using family-level data rather than unrelated samples of husbands and wives, and (c) expanding the conceptualization of personal well-being to include self-reports of depression and life satisfaction as well as observational reports of sadness. Using the first three waves from a study on families with young adolescents (N = 338 couples), partial support was found for the study hypotheses. Results from a series of structural equation models (SEM) suggested that enduring family vulnerabilities, life events, and adaptive processes such as marital behavior exchanges do not exert their influence on spouses' personal well-being through marital satisfaction. Rather, it appears that there is a direct, significant relationship between the contextual variables and personal well-being. Although one's spouses' negative marital behaviors were not significant predictors of marital satisfaction over time, or of change in marital satisfaction, one's own marital satisfaction was predictive of personal well-being over time. Further, change in marital satisfaction was a significant predictor of change in personal well-being. Model pathways were consistent for husbands and wives."--Abstract from author supplied metadata.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2006
marital satisfaction, spouses, personal well-being, family studies, life stressors
Marriage--Psychological aspects
Married people
Well being

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