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Dimensions of Marriage Happiness

Susan R. Orden and Norman M. Bradburn
American Journal of Sociology
Vol. 73, No. 6 (May, 1968), pp. 715-731
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2775777
Page Count: 17
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Dimensions of Marriage Happiness
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Abstract

This paper is concerned with the development of a theoretical model of the structure of marriage happiness that may be useful for diagnosis, analysis, and prediction. An over-all model, composed of a dimension of satisfactions and a dimension of tensions which function independently to produce happiness in marriage, is suggested. The independent dimensions correlate in the expected directions with an individual's own assessment of his marriage, but do not correlate with each other. These characteristics suggest that the difference between an individual's scores on the satisfactions and tensions indexes, called the "Marriage Adjustment Balance Scale" (MABS), is a good over-all indicator of an individual's happiness in marriage. Marriage happiness self-ratings and the MABS were found to be positively related to over-all happiness ratings. Each of the marriage happiness indexes is also related to over-all happiness in the expected direction. Finally, marriage happiness is related to over-all happiness through both positive and negative affect, so that there appears to be a perfect meshing between the two-dimensional structure of marriage happiness and the two-dimensional structure of psychological well-being.

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