Women Married To Hypersexual Men

Rory C. Reid, Bruce N. Carpenter, Elizabeth D. Draper & Jill C. Manning (2010) Exploring Psychopathology, Personality Traits, and Marital Distress Among Women Married to Hypersexual Men, Journal of Couple & Relationship Therapy, 9:3, 203-222.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/15332691.2010.491782

Study type: Quantitative

Sample size: 85 women married to hypersexual men and 85 in control group for total of 170.

Demographics: Age range 20 to 65 years (mean = 33.8); all Caucasian; 4-year bachelor’s degrees (64%), 2-year associate’s degrees (14%), some college (18%), and high school diplomas (4%); first marriage (n = 71), remarried (n = 8), and separated (n = 6).

Key findings & quotes:
  • “Reports the findings of a study investigating psychopathology, personality traits, and marital distress among a sample of women married to hypersexual men (n = 85) compared with a control group (n = 85) drawn from a combined college and community sample. Psychopathology and personality traits were measured using the NEO Personality Inventory—Revised (NEO–PI–R), and martial satisfaction was measured using the Revised Dyadic Adjustment Scale (RDAS).”
  • Wives of hypersexual men “did not show any more psychopathology or problematic personality traits than would be found within a community sample. In contrast, wives were significantly more distressed about their marriages compared with the controls. Overall, these findings contradict much of the existing research that characterizes wives of hypersexual men as being more depressed, anxious, and chemically dependent, as well as emotionally needy.”
  • “Clinicians should avoid pathologizing women married to hypersexual men, as they appear overall to be psychologically healthy. This observation, supported by our data, contradicts many earlier findings in the research about this population of women.”
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