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J Sex Marital Ther. 2005 Oct-Dec;31(5):409-24.

Exploring relationships among communication, sexual satisfaction, and marital satisfaction.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee 37996-0900, USA. slitzing@utk.edu


This study examined relationships among couple communication, sexual satisfaction, and marital satisfaction in 387 married couples. Regression analyses demonstrated that communication and sexual satisfaction independently predict marital satisfaction. However, there is a significant interaction between communication and sexual satisfaction; if couples are successful at communicating constructively, sexual satisfaction fails to contribute to marital satisfaction. Alternatively, if couples have difficulty communicating but are sexually satisfied, they will experience greater marital satisfaction than if they have a less satisfying sexual relationship. Thus, sexual satisfaction may partially compensate for the negative effects of poor communication on marital satisfaction.

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