Exploring Transformational Processes and Meaning in LDS Marriages


commitment, conflict, coping with stress, intrinsic religiosity, marriage, Mormon families, qualitative research, religion


For decades, research has shown that religion is correlated with several important aspects of marriage. However, most studies have looked only at distal aspects of a couple's religion, such as church attendance or religious salience, and are therefore hard pressed to explain precisely how religion and marriage correlate. This qualitative study examines the connection Mormon (LDS) couples perceive between their religious faith and their marriage and family relationships. For this study we used a subset of a national sample of 445 individuals from across the United States who were interviewed over several years; this subset consisted of 48 individuals (24 couples) living in seven different states (25% of whom are ethnic minorities) that we interviewed. The interviews specifically sought to understand how these couples connected their faith to five transformational constructs: commitment, sacrifice, coping, conflict resolution, and forgiveness. Each couple shared specific beliefs and practices that impacted their approach to these constructs. Analysis was then made identifying patterns and parallels.

Original Publication Citation

Goodman, M. A., Marks, L. D., & Dollahite, D. C. (2012). Transformational processes and meaning in Latter-day Saint marriage. Marriage and Family Review, 48, 555-582.

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date



Marriage & Family Review




Family, Home, and Social Sciences


Family Life

University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor