Caregiving, specifically caregiver burden, is commonly related to decreased psychological well-being. Conversely, marital quality is positively related to psychological well-being, though existing literature presents mixed findings as to whether or not a gender difference exists in this relationship. The current study examined the relationship between objective and subjective spousal caregiver burden and psychological distress with marital quality as a moderator. Gender differences in this relationship were also explored. 1,066 spousal caregivers from the National Study of Caregiving (NSOC) were used to estimate cross-sectional moderation models and plot significant interactions in Mplus. Results indicated a significant positive relationship between subjective caregiver burden and psychological distress, and higher marital quality protected against psychological distress in this relationship. The connection between objective caregiver burden and psychological distress was not significant, and no gender differences were found in the moderation of marital quality. These findings suggest that perceptions of caregiver burden are important for the psychological health of spousal caregivers, and higher marital quality may be an effective buffer of this relationship regardless of gender. Spousal caregivers who perceive caregiving to be highly burdensome may benefit from improving their marital quality to protect against negative psychological health outcomes.
College and Department
Family, Home, and Social Sciences; Family Life
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
White, Avalon, "Psychological Distress of Spousal Caregivers of Older Adults: The Moderating Role of Marital Quality" (2022). Theses and Dissertations. 9430.
caregiver burden, marital quality, psychological distress, spousal caregivers