The Role of Self-Compassion in the Association Between Childhood Maltreatment and Marital Quality: An Actor–Partner Interdependence Model

Dana Lassri*, Osnat Zamir*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Childhood maltreatment (CM) is a significant risk factor for intimate relationship and marital quality. However, there has been limited research exploring the underlying mechanisms of this link, with most studies focusing on individuals, while not considering the dyadic context and reciprocal influences within intimate relationships. Intimate relationships entail mutual processes, where each partner’s abusive experiences can affect the partner’s marital quality. In this study, we aimed to examine whether selfcompassion is an underlying factor in the dyadic associations between CM and one’s own and one’s partner’s marital quality. Method: A convenience sample of 115 heterosexual couples completed self-report questionnaires. Results: Utilizing an actor–partner interdependence model, we found partial support for our hypotheses, indicating that each partner’s CM was indirectly associated with their own marital quality through their self-compassion. However, CM did not significantly impact their partner’s marital quality through self-compassion. Conclusions: These findings contribute to the existing evidence supporting the mediating role of self-compassion as a transdiagnostic protective factor associated with increased marital quality for individuals with a history of CM. Nevertheless, the results suggest that this mediating effect may be specific to one’s own marital quality and may not extend to the partner’s marital quality.

Original languageAmerican English
JournalPsychological Trauma: Theory, Research, Practice, and Policy
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 American Psychological Association

Keywords

  • childhood maltreatment
  • dyadic approach
  • intimate relationship quality
  • mindfulness
  • self-compassion

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