Title

A Longitudinal Examination of Women's Perceptions of Marital Power and Marital Happiness in Midlife Marriages

Keywords

women, power, midlife, marriage, marital happiness

Abstract

An unequal distribution of marital power has shown to have an impact on overall marital functioning, including marital quality and marital satisfaction. Women tend to have less power in marital relationships. Therefore, it is important for both researchers and clinicians to examine wives’ perceptions of marital power and marital happiness. The current study examined wives’ perceptions of marital power processes and power outcomes in heterosexual midlife marriages in relation to concurrent and subsequent marital happiness across a 15-year period. The results indicated that both marital power processes and power outcomes significantly influenced concurrent marital happiness. Additionally, concurrent marital happiness influenced marital happiness 15 years later, suggesting an indirect relationship between concurrent marital power and subsequent marital happiness. No direct relationship was found between marital power and subsequent marital happiness. The lack of significant findings between marital power and subsequent marital happiness is examined. Immediate and subsequent marital benefits of egalitarian marriages are discussed, and suggestions for effective clinical practice in addressing marital power are given.

Original Publication Citation

*LeBaron, C. D. L., Miller, R. B., & Yorgason, J. B. (2014). A longitudinal examination of women’s perceptions of marital power and marital happiness in midlife marriages. Journal of Couple and Relationship Therapy, 13, 93-113.

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date

2014-04-24

Publisher

Journal of Couple and Relationship Therapy

Language

English

College

Family, Home, and Social Sciences

Department

Sociology

University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor

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