Journal of Child and Family Studies

, Volume 27, Issue 5, pp 1492–1501 | Cite as

Parenthood as a Determining Factor of Satisfaction in Couple Relationships

  • Antonio Urbano-Contreras
  • Raquel-Amaya Martínez-González
  • María-Teresa Iglesias-García
Original Paper
  • 102 Downloads

Abstract

This study aimed to meet whether there are differences in satisfaction with the relationship according to having children or not and whether these differences are determined by gender, and to establish predictive models explaining the satisfaction based on having children or not. This study included 620 volunteer participants (57.7% women and 42.3% men; 57.9% did not have children, and 42.1% did have), not minors and maintaining a couple relationship at that time. The Satisfaction in Couple Relationship Scale (SCR) was used in the study, made up of ten items and with a reliability of .93. The contrast of satisfaction between people with children and without children was carried out using the Student’s t, and gender differences by using ANOVA (analyzing as well the interaction between gender and children with ANOVA of two factors —gender and children). Moreover, a multiple linear regression analysis identified a multivariate predictive model of the satisfaction with the couple relationship according to the gender. General results showed greater rates of satisfaction among the couples, although persons not having children show greater rates of satisfaction with the couple relationship. According to the gender, mothers show less satisfaction. On the other hand, the greatest predictive factor of the satisfaction is related to feeling excited about the couple relationship. In the face of results obtained, it can be concluded with the need for supporting couples with children in order to strengthen their relationships and hence being able to properly face the challenges of the parenthood.

Keywords

Parenthood Children Couple relationships Satisfaction Gender 

Notes

Acknowledgements

This work is part of the project EDU2012-38074, granted by the Spanish Ministry of Finance and Competitiveness and the University of Oviedo. The first author is assisted by BES-2013-063623 for pre-doctoral contracts for the training of doctors, granted by the aforementioned Ministry.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.

References

  1. Ajenjo Cosp, M. & García Román, J. (2014). Cambios en el uso del tiempo de las parejas ¿Estamos en el camino hacia una mayor igualdad? [Changes in couples’ time use. Are we moving toward greater equality?]. Revista Internacional de Sociología, 72(2), 453–476.  https://doi.org/10.3989/ris.2012.05.28.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Akagi, C. G., Schumm, W. R., & Bergen, M. B. (2003). Dimensionality of the Kansas Family Strengths Scale and the Kansas Marital Satisfaction Scale as revised to capture changes in marital satisfaction. Psychological Reports, 93(3), 1267–1274.  https://doi.org/10.2466/pr0.93.7.1267-1274.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Armenta-Huarte, C., Sánchez-Aragón, R., & Díaz-Loving, R. (2012). ¿De qué manera el contexto afecta la satisfacción con la pareja? [How context affects couple satisfaction?]. Suma Psicológica, 19(2), 51–62Google Scholar
  4. Atil, H., & Unver, Y. (2001). Multiple comparisons. OnLine Journal of Biological Sciences, 1(8), 723–727.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Belsley, D. A. (1991). A guide to using the collinearity diagnostics. Computer Science in Economics and Management, 4(1), 33–50.Google Scholar
  6. Butt, M. M., Asif, S., Yahya, F., Fazli, S. K., & Hania, A. (2014). Children perception of inter-parental conflicts and their cognitive emotion regulation. World Applied Sciences Journal, 31(6), 1118–1130.  https://doi.org/10.5829/idosi.wasj.2014.31.06.494.Google Scholar
  7. Cantón, J., Cortés, M. R., & Justicia, M. D. (2002). Las consecuencias del divorcio en los hijos [Consequences of divorce for children]. Psicopatología Clínica, Legal y Forense, 2(3), 47–66.Google Scholar
  8. Capafons Bonet, J. I., & Sosa Castilla, C. D. (2009). Tratando… problemas de pareja [Treating… couple problems]. Madrid: Pirámide, D. L.Google Scholar
  9. Cohen, J. (1973). Eta-squared and partial eta-squared in communication science. Human Communication Research, 28, 473–490.Google Scholar
  10. Cohen, J. (1988). Statistical power analysis for the behavioral science. 2nd edn. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.Google Scholar
  11. Collins, W. A., Welsh, D. P., & Furman, W. (2009). Adolescent romantic relationships. Annual Review of Psychology, 60, 631–652.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Crockenberg, S., & Langrock, A. (2001). The role of specific emotions in children’s responses to interparental conflict: A test of the model. Journal of Family Psychology, 15(2), 163–182.  https://doi.org/10.1037/0893-3200.15.2.163.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. Cronbach, L. J. (1951). Coefficient alpha and the internal structure of test. Psychometrika, 16, 297–334.  https://doi.org/10.1007/bf02310555.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Doss, B. D., Rhoades, G. K., Stanley, S. M., & Markman, H. J. (2009). The effect of the transition to parenthood on relationship quality: An 8-year prospective study. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 96(3), 601  https://doi.org/10.1037/a0013969.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  15. Doss, B. D., & Rhoades, G. K. (2017). The transition to parenthood: Impact on couples’ romantic relationships. Current Opinion in Psychology, 13, 25–28.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.copsyc.2016.04.003.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. Eguiluz Romo, L. L. (2004). Las mujeres y el divorcio. Una visión de género [Women and divorce. A gender perspective]. Temas de Mujeres, Revista del Centro de Estudios Históricos e Interdisciplinario Sobre las Mujeres, 1(1), 5.Google Scholar
  17. Flores Galaz, M. M. (2011). Comunicación y conflicto: ¿qué tanto impactan en la satisfacción marital? [Conflict and Communication: their Impact on Marital Satisfaction]. Acta de Investigación Psicológica, 1(2), 216–232.Google Scholar
  18. Fosco, G. M., & Grych, J. H. (2013). Capturing the family context of emotion regulation a family systems model comparison approach. Journal of Family Issues, 34(4), 557–578.  https://doi.org/10.1177/0192513X12445889.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Funk, J. L., & Rogge, R. D. (2007). Testing the ruler with item response theory: Increasing precision of measurement for relationship satisfaction with the couples satisfaction index. Journal of Family Psychology, 21(4), 572–583.  https://doi.org/10.1037/0893-3200.21.4.572.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. Gambrel, L. E., Faas, C., Kaestle, C. E., & Savla, J. (2016). Interpersonal neurobiology and couple relationship quality: A longitudinal model. Contemporary Family Therapy, 38(3), 272–283.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10591-016-9381-y.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. García Meraz, M., & Romero Palencia, A. (2012). Mantenimiento en la relación de pareja: Construcción y validación de dos escalas [Maintenance of couple relationship: Development and validation of the two scales]. Revista Iberoamericana de Diagnóstico y Evaluación Psicológica, 34(1), 133–155.Google Scholar
  22. Garrido Garduño, A., Reyes Luna, A. G., Torres Velázquez, L. E., & Ortega Silva, P. (2008). Importancia de las expectativas de pareja en la dinámica familiar [Importance of the couple expectations in family dynamics]. Enseñanza e Investigación en Psicología, 13(2), 231–238.Google Scholar
  23. George, D., & Mallery, P. (2003). SPSS for Windows step by step: A Simple guide and reference. 11.0. (4th ed.). Boston: Allyn & Bacon.Google Scholar
  24. Ghazarian, S. R., & Buehler, C. (2010). Interparental conflict and academic achievement: An examination of mediating and moderating factors. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 39(1), 23–25.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10964-008-9360-1.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  25. Goodman, L. A. (1961). Snowball sampling. Annals of Mathematical Statistics, 32, 148–170.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Greeff, A. P., & De Bruyne, T. (2000). Conflict management style and marital satisfaction. Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy, 26(4), 321–334.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  27. Hendrick, S. S. (1988). A generic measure of relationship satisfaction. Journal of Marriage and Family, 50, 93–98.  https://doi.org/10.2307/352430.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Hernández Martínez, N. M., Alberti Manzanares, M. P., Núñez Espinoza, J. F., & Samaniego Villareal, M. D. (2011). Relaciones de género y satisfacción marital en comunidades rurales de Texcoco, Estado de México [Gender relationships and marital satisfaction in rural communities of Texcoco, Estado de México]. Revista Internacional de Ciencias Sociales y Humanidades, SOCIOTAM, 21(1), 39–64.Google Scholar
  29. Hidalgo, M. V., & Menéndez, S. (2003). La pareja ante la llegada de los hijos e hijas. Evolución de la relación conyugal durante el proceso de convertirse en padre y madre [The couple before the arrival of children. Evolution of a conjugal Relationship during the Process of Becoming parents] Infancia y Aprendizaje, 26(4), 469–483.  https://doi.org/10.1174/021037003322553851.Google Scholar
  30. Hidalgo García, M. V., & Menéndez Álvarez-Dardet, S. (2009). Apoyo a las familias durante el proceso de transición a la maternidad y la paternidad [Support to families in the transition to motherhood and fatherhood]. Familia: Revista de Ciencias y Orientación Familiar, 38, 133–152.Google Scholar
  31. Keppel, G. (1982). Design and analysis: A researcher’s handbook. 2nd edn. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.Google Scholar
  32. Kirk, R. E. (1996). Practical significance: A concept whose time has come. Educational & Psychological Measurement, 56, 746–759.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Lawrence, E., Nylen, K., & Cobb, R. J. (2007). Prenatal expectations and marital satisfaction over the transition to parenthood. Journal of Family Psychology, 21(2), 155.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  34. López Sánchez, F. (2009). Amores y desamores: Procesos de vinculación y desvinculación sexuales y afectivos [Falling in and out of love: Processes of sexual and affective linking and decoupling]. Madrid: Biblioteca Nueva.Google Scholar
  35. Marina, J. A. (2012). Escuela de parejas [Couple School]. Barcelona: Ariel.Google Scholar
  36. Medina, A. M., Lederhos, C. L., & Lillis, T. A. (2009). Sleep disruption and decline in marital satisfaction across the transition to parenthood. Families, Systems and Health, 27(2), 153–160.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  37. Montes-Berges, B. (2009). Patrones de comunicación, diferenciación y satisfacción en la relación de pareja: Validación y análisis de estas escalas en muestras españolas [Communication pattern, differentiation and satisfaction in couple relationships: Validation and anaysis of these scales in Spanish samples]. Anales de Psicología, 25(2), 288–298.Google Scholar
  38. Mora Torres, M., Gómez Cortés, M., & Rivera Heredia, M. (2013). La satisfacción marital y los recursos psicológicos en las parejas con y sin hijos pequeños en pro del bienestar familiar [Marital satisfaction and psychological resources in couples with and without children in pro of family welfare]. Uaricha, 10(22), 79–96.Google Scholar
  39. Musick, K., & Meier, A. (2010). Are both parents always better than one? Parental conflict and young adult well-being. Social Science Research, 39(5), 814–830.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ssresearch.2010.03.002.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  40. Narciso, I. (1996). El ciclo vital de la pareja [Life cycle of couple]. M. Millán Ventura (Dir.), Psicología de la familia: Un enfoque evolutivo y sistémico [Family Psychology: An evolutive and systemic approach]. Valencia: Promolibro.Google Scholar
  41. Paleari, F. G., Regalia, C., & Fincham, F. D. (2010). Forgiveness and conflict resolution in close relationships: Within and cross partner effects. Universitas Psychologica, 9(1), 35–56.Google Scholar
  42. Pardo, A., Garrido, J., Ruiz, M. A., & San Martín, R. (2007). La interacción entre factores en el análisis de varianza: Errores de interpretación [Interaction in ANOVA: Misconceptions]. Psicothema, 19(2), 343–349.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  43. Rholes, W. S., Simpson, J. A., Campbell, L., & Grich, J. (2001). Adult attachment and the transition to parenthood. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 81(3), 421–435.  https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-3514.84.6.1172.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  44. Roach, A. R., Browden, R., & Frazier, T. (1981). The marital satisfaction scale. Journal of Marriage and the Family, 43, 537–546.  https://doi.org/10.2307/351755.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Rodrigo, M. J, Palacios, J. (Coords.) (1998). Familia y desarrollo humano [Family and human development]. Madrid: Alianza Editorial S.A.Google Scholar
  46. Ruíz Becerril, D. (2001). Relaciones de pareja [Couple relationships]. Revista de Educación, 325, 49–55.Google Scholar
  47. Sánchez Aragón, R. (2009). Expectativas, percepción de estabilidad y estrategias de mantenimiento en las relaciones amorosas [Expectations, perception of stability, and maintenance strategies in loving relationships]. Enseñanza e Investigación en Psicología, 14(2), 229–243.Google Scholar
  48. Schumm, W. A., Nichols, C. W., Schectman, K. L., & Grigsby, C. C. (1983). Characteristics of responses to the Kansas Marital Satisfaction Scale by a sample of 84 married mothers. PsychologicaL Reports, 53(2), 567–572.  https://doi.org/10.2466/pr0.1983.53.2.567.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Schwarz, B., Stutz, M., & Ledermann, T. (2012). Perceived interparental conflict and early adolescents’ friendships: The role of attachment security and emotion regulation. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 41(9), 1240–1252.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10964-012-9769-4.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  50. Shapiro, A. F., Gottman, J. M., & Carrere, S. (2000). The baby and the marriage: Identifying factors that buffer against decline in marital satisfaction after the first baby arrives. Journal of Family Psychology, 14(1), 59.  https://doi.org/10.1037//0893-3200.14.1.59.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  51. Spanier, G. B. (1976). Measuring dyadic adjustment: New scales for assessing the quality of marriage and similar dyads. Journal of Marriage and the Family, 38(1), 15–28.  https://doi.org/10.2307/350547.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Tabachnick, B. G, Fidell, L. S. (1996). Using multivariate statistics. (3rd ed.). New York, NY: Harper Collins College Publisher.Google Scholar
  53. Turner, H. A., & Kopiec, K. (2006). Exposure to inter-parental conflict and psychological disorder among young adults. Journal of Family Issues, 27(2), 131–158.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Twenge, J. M., Campbell, W. K., & Foster, C. A. (2003). Parenthood and marital satisfaction: A meta-analytic review. Journal of Marriage and Family, 65(3), 574–583.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1741-3737.2003.00574.x.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Urbano-Contreras, A., Iglesias-García, M. T., & Martínez-González, R. A. (2017). Development and Validation of the Satisfaction in Couple Relationship Scale (SCR). Contemporary Family Therapy, 39(1), 54–61.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10591-016-9400-z.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Valdivia Sánchez, C. (2008). La familia: Concepto, cambios y nuevos modelos [The family: Concept, changes and new models]. La Revue de REDIF, 1, 15–22.Google Scholar
  57. Vega-Vilca, J. C., & Guzmán, J. (2011). Regresión PLS y PCA como solución al problema de multicolinealidad en regresión múltiple [PLS and PCA regressions as a solution to the problem of multicollinearity in multiple regression]. Revista de Matemática Teoría y Aplicaciones, 18(1), 9–20.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Vidal González, L. F., Rivera Aragón, S., Díaz-Loving, R., & Méndez Ramírez, I. (2012). Elaboración de una escala de permanencia en la relación de pareja [Elaboration of a scale of permanence in the couple relationship]. Revista Iberoamericana de Diagnóstico y Evaluación Psicológica, 33(1), 199–218.Google Scholar
  59. Ward, P. J., Lundberg, N. R., Zabriskie, R. B., & Berrett, K. (2009). Measuring marital satisfaction: A comparison of the Revised Dyadic Adjustment Scale and the Satisfaction with Married Life Scale. Marriage and Family Review, 45(4), 412–429.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Antonio Urbano-Contreras
    • 1
  • Raquel-Amaya Martínez-González
    • 1
  • María-Teresa Iglesias-García
    • 1
  1. 1.University of OviedoOviedoSpain

Personalised recommendations