The Relation Between Mental Well-Being and Marital Satisfaciton

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Profossor, Department of Sociology and Social Planning Shiraz University, Shiraz, Iran

2 M.A. Student, Shiraz University, Shiraz, Iran


Functional value of the social institution of family is important in any social system. Any society with its values ​​ is beginning to look into family to train its future citizens. One of the important issues in this institution is the quality of relationships between parents (spouses). When a relation between the two is satisfactory in a relaxed family on which the ruling family in public life will improve performance. One of the affective factors that impact the process of making marital satisfaction effective is psychological issues. Therefore, according to a mental health problem of the couples can enhance their marital satisfaction and ultimately improve the efficiency of the family.  Previous studies indicate that the level of psychological well-being is an affective factor in marital satisfaction of women than men. Also as known the cultural roots in modern cities have been weaken and divorce rate has been increased (Shirazi, 2007; Shie, 2001). While the studies and research in this regard is less. Thus pay attention to mental well-being with regard to the role of social context causes to increase the survival rates of marital satisfaction of women in particular and families in general. We choosed Najafabad and Fooladshahr as different social contexts, because of their cultural, demographic and historical distinctions. In one hand Najafabad is an old and passing city which could maintain its ancient structure and in the other hand has been accepted elements of modern and industrial life.  But Fooladshahr is a new and immigrant town which because of this character, it has no homogenous and specific culture and diversity of cultures and ethnos in this city has been caused different positive and negative problems in habitant's lives. The statistics show that the immigration of Fooladshahr is more than Najafabad. Therefore, the total goal of this paper is answering to these questions: what kind of relation is there between mental well-being and marital satisfaction of married women? How much social context could affect elements of the quality of women marital satisfaction?

Material and methods
This study’s respondents are the married women living in the two cities, one (Najafabad) located in western part of Isfahan province and another (Fuladshahr) in southwestern Isfahan (a province in central Iran). The systematic sampling of the population was used here. The criteria for the inclusion were that the participants be married women whose marriage had lasted for at least 3 years. Participation was voluntary. The final sample included 757 participants -381 women in Najafabad (50.3%) and 376 women in Fuladshahr (49.7%). The age of Najafabad’s women ranged from 17 to 70 (Mean=35.74), and that of Fooladshahr’s women was from 16 to 74 (Mean=35.12). The participants in Najafabad had been married on average for 14.07 years and had a mean number of children of 2.25.
Literature framework of this study was Duval and hill theory which mixed with bott theory. According to this literature framework conceptual and experimental models with hypothesis have been showed.

Figure 1- Conceptual Model
Figure 2- Experimental Model

 Research hypothesis
1-There is a significant relation between city and marital satisfaction.
2- There is a significant relation between age and marital satisfaction.
3- There is a significant relation between marriage duration and marital satisfaction.
4- There is a significant relation between number of children and marital satisfaction.
5- There is a significant relation between mental well-being and marital satisfaction.
Background questionnaire
The questionnaire, which was designed specifically for this study, included queries so as to obtain the following information: age, years married, the number of children, and city.
The mental well-being inventory
The SWLS[1] (Diener 2000), which was translated into Persian (Mohammadi 2007), was used to assess the levels of mental well-being. The equivalence between the original and adapted versions was verified by a back-translation process performed by native English speakers living in Iran. The inventory is a 19-item self-reporting measurement.
The marital satisfaction inventory (LMI[2])
In the original version, marital satisfaction is measured by 27 statements pertaining to five dimensions: empathy, communication, affection, sexual satisfaction, doing things together. For each statement, respondents were asked to indicate the degree to which it applied to them on a five-point Likert-like scale (1= absolutely disagree, 5 = absolutely agree). Where necessary, the ratings were reversed so that the higher the rating, the better the marital satisfaction.
Discussion of results and conclusions
This study investigates the effect of mental well-being on marital satisfaction via the role of town location. As was noted, the results were presented in two parts: descriptive and inferential statistics. The descriptive statistics results were such that most were middle-aged women and young ages. Marriage average was about fourteen years and the average number of children was two.  But the second part of the test results obtained from these assumptions.
Hypothesis 1: There is a significant relation between city and marital satisfaction. As was noted at least 95 percent confidence level, this hypothesis was confirmed. Average total amount of general marital satisfaction among women more than women residing in Najaf Abad was Fooladshahr.
Hypothesis 2: There is a significant relation between age and marital satisfaction. The above hypothesis is confirmed by at least 95% confidence level. In general, whatever their age increases the rate of marital satisfaction decreases and this was true in both the city of Najafabad and Fooladshahr, with little difference in Najafabad women ages which their marital satisfaction will be increases at the last days of their marital relations.
Hypothesis 3: There is a significant relation between marriage duration and marital satisfaction. The above hypothesis was confirmed. The highest average of marital satisfaction was related to the women who were married for 3 to 10 years and were living in Fooladshahr. The lowest average of marital satisfaction is also related to Fooladshahr women with 20 years marriage duration.
Hypothesis 4: There is a significant relation between number of children and marital satisfaction. This hypothesis was not confirmed in 95% confidence level.
Hypothesis 5: There is a significant relation between mental well-being and marital satisfaction. Above hypothesis was not confirmed. The highest average of marital satisfaction was related to mental well-being of the women who live Fooladshahr.
Stepwise multivariate analysis to predict the dependent variable showed that two variables(number of children and mental well-being) could explain 35% percent of the variances in the dependent variable. while this rate was 43% in Fooladshahr. Thus strengthening the mental well-being in women can increase their marital satisfaction. The results showed that the phenomenon of migration on women's lives is very significant Fooladshahr.

1 The Satisfaction With Life Scale

1 Lee Marital Inventory


Main Subjects

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