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Marital transitions and mental health

Wade, TJ and Pevalin, DJ (2004) 'Marital transitions and mental health.' Journal of Health and Social Behavior, 45 (2). 155 - 170. ISSN 0022-1465

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Most research identifies marital disruption as a precursor for poor mental health but is generally unable to discount the potential selection effect of poor mental health leading to marital disruption. We use data from nine annual waves of the British Household Panel Survey to examine social selection and social causation as competing explanations. Mental health is measured using the general health questionnaire. We examine mental health at multiple time points prior to and after a marital transition through separation or divorce and compare this process to those who experience widowhood. All groups transitioning out of marriage have a higher prevalence of poor mental health afterwards but for those separated or divorced, poor mental health also precedes marital disruption, lending support to both social-causation and social-selection processes. The processes both preceding and after the transition to widowhood differ, with increased prevalence of disorder centering around the time surrounding the death itself.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Sociology, Department of
Depositing User: Jim Jamieson
Date Deposited: 24 Sep 2013 15:26
Last Modified: 10 Jan 2018 05:15

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