Body image and marital adjustment

Report
Akram Karami Dehkordi ¹‫٭‬, Dr. Robab Latifnejad Roudsari ²
1- Master of Midwifery, Shahrekord University of Medical Science, Shahrekord, Iran
2- Assistant Professor in Reproductive Health, Department of Midwifery, Mashhad University of Medical Science, Mashhad, Iran
Objectives
Considering that body image is an important
component of self-esteem, women’s body image
may shape relationship satisfaction in similar ways.
That is, women with more positive body image may
be more confident that their partners will continue to
accept them and thus be more likely to take
emotional risks that are necessary to maintain the
marital relationship. This study therefore aimed to
compare the relationship of body image with marital
adjustment in fertile and infertile women in 2010 in
Mashhad, Iran.
This comparative correlational study was carried
out on 130 fertile women referred to urban health
clinics and 130 infertile women referred to
Montaserieh Infertility Research Center, Mashhad
who were selected using cluster and convenient
sampling, respectively. Research tools were
consisted of valid and reliable demographic
questionnaires
including
personal
and
fertility/infertility-related data, modified Younesi
Body Image Questionnaire and modified Spanier
Marital Adjustment Scale (DAS), which were
completed by the subjects. Data analysis was
carried out by SPSS software using t-test, one way
ANOVA, Spearman and Pearson correlation tests
and linear regression.
Table 1- Mean score of marital adjustment subscales in fertile and
infertile women
Variables
Marital adjustment
Fertile women
Infertile women
X  SD
Dyadic consensus
Dyadic
Satisfaction
Dyadic cohesion
Affection
expression
Total
Independent
t-test results
X  SD
48.4±10.37
36.01±8.3
50.76±9.19
37.62±7.76
P= 0.049
P= 0.1
14.10±4.23
9.63±2.01
15.78±4.75
9.63±1.92
P= 0.003
P= 0.28
107.89±21.34
113.8±19.73
P= 0.02
T= -2.32
There was no significant difference between the
mean score of body image in fertile and infertile
women (304.21±45.85 versus 308.1±45.85).
However, the mean score of marital adjustment in
fertile and infertile women was significantly
different (107.89±21.34 versus 113.8±19.73)
(P<0.02) (Table 1). Based on the cut point of 100
in marital adjustment scale, 67.7% of fertile
women vs 76.9% of infertile women had high and
32.3% of fertile women vs 23.1% of infertile
women had low marital adjustment score. A
direct correlation was also found between body
image and marital satisfaction in both fertile
(P<0.001) and infertile women (P<0.0001),
although there was no significant difference
between the relationship of body image and
marital satisfaction in fertile and infertile women
(Diagram 1).
Diagram 1- Regression lines of relationship between body image and marital
adjustment in fertile and infertile women
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The lower marital adjustment of fertile women in
References
comparison to infertile ones and its direct relationship
with body image should draw the attention of
reproductive health care providers to adopt strategies
to promote marital adjustment in fertile women
particularly for those who suffer from impaired body
image and marital dispute.

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