Abstract

Research indicates that having high sexual satisfaction during pregnancy is difficult for couples. This negative trend is important considering that low sexual satisfaction can negatively affect both relationship satisfaction, psychological health, and child outcomes. However, there is evidence that this trend does not apply to all and different groups of couples exist in terms of their sexual satisfaction in pregnancy. Guided by family systems theory and the biopsychosocial model, the current study explored if different subsets of couples, composed of pregnant wives and husbands, exist in terms of their sexual satisfaction during pregnancy and what factors distinguish potential subsets. Using U.S. nationally representative data from 523 pregnant married couples and latent profile analysis adjusting for pregnancy-related biological factors, two subsets of pregnant couples were identified—a larger subset of couples where wives and husbands were satisfied with sex overall (79%) and a smaller subset where wives and husbands were neutral about satisfaction with sex (21%). Having lower depressive symptoms among wives was associated with a greater likelihood of being in the more satisfied subset over the less satisfied subset—the only significant predictor among a variety of biological, psychological, and relational factors, including sexual frequency. Implications include the notion that most U.S. couples do well in navigating the sexual challenges in their control during pregnancy and the importance for medical professionals, practitioners, and educators to help women maintain good mental health during pregnancy in order to better sexual, relational, and psychological outcomes for expectant couples and improve early childhood outcomes.

Degree

MS

College and Department

Family, Home, and Social Sciences

Rights

https://lib.byu.edu/about/copyright/

Date Submitted

2020-06-12

Document Type

Thesis

Handle

http://hdl.lib.byu.edu/1877/etd11240

Keywords

Pregnancy, sexual satisfaction, depression, parents, couples

Language

english

Share

COinS