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December 2, 1939

Psychological Factors in Marital Happiness

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By Lewis M. Terman and others. Cloth. Price, $4. Pp. 474, with 28 illustrations. New York & London: McGraw-Hill Book Company, Inc., 1938.

JAMA. 1939;113(23):2085. doi:10.1001/jama.1939.02800480071029

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Abstract

In this book the authors discuss the marital satisfaction experienced by 2,484 subjects, including 1,133 married couples and 109 divorced couples. The technic used was psychometric. The various chapters describe the psychologic factors in marital compatibility and the development of an index of marital happiness. There are studies of the personalities of happily married and unhappily married people, with special relation to the family background. Then there are four chapters dealing with sexual factors. Here the authors discuss sleeping arrangements, contraceptive technics, sexual complaints and similar matters.

In estimating their index of marital happiness, the authors concern themselves with such matters as customary methods of settling disagreements, regret of marriage, choice of spouse if life was to be lived over, and a complete score based on domestic grievances. The happiness index and the personality tests are also significant. The authors found, for example, that the presence of children often prevents

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