Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Experience and age at first experience of child maltreatment in relation to relationship satisfaction and sexual satisfaction
by McCreery, Amy, M.S., Northern Illinois University, 2009, 104; 1473908
Abstract (Summary)

The purpose of the study was to examine how the experience of maltreatment influenced future relationship satisfaction or sexual satisfaction. The present study included 359 participants, of which 249 indicated that they were involved in a current romantic relationship. Using a two-tailed t test examining those who experienced maltreatment, the present study did not find significance that the experience of maltreatment influenced relationship satisfaction. Using a two-tailed t test examining those who experienced maltreatment, the present study found that the experience of maltreatment influenced sexual satisfaction. Those who reported the experience of childhood maltreatment reported lower levels of sexual satisfaction.

The current study also examined if the age at first experience of childhood maltreatment influenced relationship satisfaction or sexual satisfaction. For these research questions, a sample of 37 participants who had experienced childhood maltreatment and were in a current romantic relationship was used. Utilizing a multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) and an analysis of variance (ANOVA), no significant findings were shown for the influence of age at first experience of childhood maltreatment on relationship satisfaction or sexual satisfaction.

A MANOVA was conducted to determine if there was a difference in relationship or sexual satisfaction depending on the type of abuse experienced. Significant findings were found for relationship satisfaction for those who experienced physical or sexual abuse as well as psychological abuse. Participants with a combination of psychological abuse with physical or sexual abuse reported lower levels of relationship satisfaction.

A two-tailed t test was conducted to determine if there was a difference in relationship satisfaction and sexual satisfaction for those who were engaged or married compared to those who were dating for the entire sample. Significant findings were found in all categories except sexual satisfaction, including the subscales for relationship satisfaction. Relationship satisfaction, investment size, and commitment level were reported higher among engaged or married couples than dating couples.

Future research may expand on the present study by including a larger sample of participants who experienced maltreatment, more ethnically diverse samples, as well as expanding the age and education range. Future research also may include more specialized methods of obtaining information about childhood maltreatment and examine more in-depth the significance of psychological abuse when combined with other forms of abuse.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Derscheid, Linda E.
Commitee: Prawitz, Aimee D., Xie, Charline
School: Northern Illinois University
Department: Family, Consumer and Nutrition Sciences
School Location: United States -- Illinois
Source: MAI 48/04M, Masters Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Clinical psychology, Individual & family studies
Keywords: Age of child maltreatment, Child maltreatment, Global measure of sexual satisfaction, Investment model scale, Relationship satisfaction, Sexual satisfaction
Publication Number: 1473908
ISBN: 9781109601930
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