Marital Relationship Status, Social Support, and Psychological Well-Being Among Rural, Low-Income Mothers
Islam, Jokena Charisse Smith
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This study examined the relationship between marriage, social support, and psychological health among impoverished, rural mothers. While research suggests marital status and social support are negatively correlated with depression, research investigating such relationships and effects on poor, rural mothers over time is scant. To examine the roles of marital status, social support, and time on depression, mean comparison and analysis of variance were run for depression levels across time, categories of partnership, categories of social support, and categories of change in marital status over time. While findings revealed that marital status had little effect on depression levels, social support appeared to be negatively correlated with depression. Furthermore, mothers who maintained marital status and reported high social support reported the lowest depression levels. Findings contribute to the limited body of research focusing on health in rural areas and yield valuable knowledge about the experience of psychological health among impoverished, rural mothers.