Perceived Spouse's Affectionate and Antagonistic Behaviours and Marital Satisfaction

Margareta Jelic, Željka Kamenov, Aleksandra Huić


The aim of the study was to examine how perceived spouse'saffectionate and antagonistic behaviours contribute to one'smarital satisfaction. Firstly, we explored whether perceptionof partner's affectionate and antagonistic behaviours varywith gender, age, length of marriage and family structure.Secondly, we examined the relation between perceivedpartner's behaviour and marital satisfaction, while controllingfor contextual variables. Questionnaire assessing love,marital satisfaction, perceived partners' affectionate andantagonistic behaviours and demographic data wasadministered to a heterogeneous sample of 302 marriedcouples from Croatia with the average marriage length of18 years and age span of 20–82 years. Results indicate thatperceived spouse's affectionate and antagonistic behavioursboth contribute to marital satisfaction with the impact ofantagonistic behaviours being buffered when it appears inaffectionate relationship. These effects are not moderated byage, gender, marriage duration or family structure. Finally,the perception of partner's affectionate and antagonisticbehaviours had significant incremental power over feelingsof love and other contextual variables when predictingmarital satisfaction.


marital satisfaction; emotional marital climate; perceived spouse’s behaviour; love

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Print ISSN 1330-0288 | Online ISSN 1848-6096