The transition to parenthood represents a critical event for the couple, which can lead to distress and reduced marital satisfaction. The ability of the parents-to-be to adjust to this modification of their roles and identity is influenced by dyadic coping strategies. This study examined the effects of dyadic coping on marital adjustment in a sample of primiparous couples. Seventy-eight women and partners completed the Dyadic Adjustment Scale and the Dyadic Coping Inventory. Data were analyzed using the Actor Partner Interdependence Model. Results revealed the both women and partners’ scores on dyadic coping behaviors contribute to higher marital adjustment, suggesting that risks for marital dissatisfaction may exist for those couples not able to implement adaptive dyadic coping strategies, or for those unsatisfied with the current coping behaviors. Research and clinical implications are discussed.
- transition to parenthood, primiparous couple, dyadic coping, marital adjustment