Couple-Level Attachment Styles, Finances, and Marital Satisfaction: Mediational Analyses Among Young Adult Newlywed Couples

Xiaomin Li, Melissa A. Curran, Ashley B. LeBaron-Black, Bryce Jorgensen, Jeremy Yorgason, Melissa J. Wilmarth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Guided by attachment theory and the Vulnerability-Stress-Adaptation model, we used three-annual-wave, dyadic data from a nationally representative sample of 1136 young-adult newlywed couples to investigate two research aims. First, we conducted a Latent Profile Analysis to identify couple-level attachment styles at Time 1 (i.e., within the first 2 years of marriage) based on the combination of husbands’ and wives’ attachment anxiety and attachment avoidance. Second, after conceptualizing couple-level attachment styles at Time 1 as vulnerability, we then examined whether finance-specific adaptive processes at Time 2 (i.e., 1 year after Time 1) mediated associations from couple-level attachment styles at Time 1 to marital satisfaction at Time 3 (i.e., 1 year after Time 2). Several findings are noteworthy. First, four different types of couple-level attachment styles were found. Second, for mediators, only perceived partner financial mismanagement mediated associations from couple-level attachment styles at Time 1 to marital satisfaction at Time 3. We discuss how the four different couple-level styles highlight the diversity and complexity in how the two partners’ attachment anxiety and attachment avoidance combine together as well as why perceived partner financial mismanagement (i.e., the lack of adaptive processes) mediated associations between couple-level attachment styles and marital satisfaction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Family and Economic Issues
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

Keywords

  • Couple-level attachment style
  • Marital satisfaction
  • Perceived partner financial mismanagement
  • Responsible financial behaviors
  • Young adults

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Economics and Econometrics

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