THE RELATIONSHIP OF MARITAL SATISFACTION TO INTERNALIZED OBJECT-REPRESENTATIONS (DREAMS)

BRIAN JOHN SWEENEY, Fordham University

Abstract

A paradigm termed "object-relations theory" addressing intrapsychic development was explored through dreams. Krohn's dream scale was used to assess individual's object relatedness, and this was compared to two measures of interpersonal relating; the Locke-Wallace Marital Adjustment Test, and the Couple's Interaction Scoring System (CISS). These two measures were also compared, one being subjective and the other objective. Male/female score variability was compared across variables, and manifest and latent responses were compared to assess the variability accounted for by each.^ Thirty couples were used as subjects; all middle class, between 21 and 35, married between one and five years, with one or two children. All were administered all tests in interviews, with the exception of dream collection. Between one and eight dreams were collected by each subject at home.^ Dreams were not found to relate significantly to either relationship measure. The marital satisfaction test did show the expected correlations with the CISS, but only for the females. For them, marital satisfaction measures related to the CISS as follows: positive manifest responses, Rho = .43**; positive latent responses, .32*; negative manifest, -.46**; and negative latent, -.36* (* = p < .05, ** = p < .01).^ Variability measures were not found to differentiate significantly between males and females, with the one unexplained exception of positive/latent communications; which showed females to be more variable.^ Finally, latent and manifest responses were not found to differ significantly.^ The present findings cannot support object-relations theory assertions. Speculations were explored as to why this would be, including score variability and theoretical concepts. These speculations await further exploration, however.^ It was suggested that the found association between female subjective and objective relationship scores may imply a greater importance for the type of interaction measured for females than males.^ The greater variability for females within their object-world as compared to men cannot be supported; nor for any other study measure. The exception noted may be a chance finding.^ Finally, the latent dimension did not appear more important in the present study.^ Many other research directions were suggested, primarily those within the object-relations paradigm. ^

Subject Area

Personality psychology

Recommended Citation

SWEENEY, BRIAN JOHN, "THE RELATIONSHIP OF MARITAL SATISFACTION TO INTERNALIZED OBJECT-REPRESENTATIONS (DREAMS)" (1985). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI8521399.
http://fordham.bepress.com/dissertations/AAI8521399

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