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Int J Soc Psychiatry. 2006 May;52(3):214-20.

Mental health aspects of Turkish women from polygamous versus monogamous families.

Author information

1
Dicle University Faculty of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry, Diyarbakir, Turkey.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Polygamy is illegal in Turkey, but is common among rural villagers in the southeastern region. Polygamous marriage may have a negative effect on the wives involved.

AIM:

The purpose of this study was to determine the extent of the relationship between psychiatric disorder and polygamous marriage.

METHOD:

The mental status of 42 senior and 46 junior wives from polygamous marriages and 50 wives from monogamous marriages was evaluated using the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Axis I Disorders (SCID-I) and Somatoform Dissociation Questionnaire (SDQ).

RESULTS:

There was a statistically significant difference among senior, junior and monogamous wives in terms of the prevalence of somatization disorder. The prevalence of somatization disorder was the highest in polygamous senior wives. The mean total SDQ scores differed significantly among the three groups. It was the highest in senior wives.

CONCLUSIONS:

It is clear that the participants from polygamous families, especially senior wives, reported more psychological distress. It is essential to increase awareness of the significance of polygamous family structures among psychiatrists and other therapists.

PMID:
16875193
DOI:
10.1177/0020764006067207
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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