Traditional Gender Ideology, Work Family Conflict, and Marital Quality among Chinese Dual-Earner Couples: A Moderated Mediation Model

Xiaomin Li, Hongjian Cao, Melissa A. Curran, Xiaoyi Fang, Nan Zhou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Traditional gender ideology, which refers to individuals’ expectations for the gendered segregation between work and family responsibilities, is a well-documented predictor for marital quality. Using three annual-wave, dyadic data from 240 Chinese dual-earner heterosexual couples surveyed during the early years of their marriage, we (a) examined how husbands’ and wives’ endorsement of traditional gender ideology interact with each other to predict marital quality and (b) tested work-to-family and family-to-work conflict as potential mediators to delineate the mechanisms via which traditional gender ideology shapes marital quality. We found that, among couples in which wives endorsed weaker traditional gender ideology at Wave 1, husbands’ stronger endorsement of traditional gender ideology at Wave 1 predicted lower levels of husbands’ marital quality at Wave 3 via higher levels of husbands’ family-to-work conflict at Wave 2. Further, husbands’ stronger endorsement of traditional gender ideology at Wave 1 predicted higher levels of their own work-to-family conflict at Wave 2 and their wives’ family-to-work conflict at Wave 2. Our findings highlight the importance of considering the discrepancy between two partners’ endorsements of traditional gender ideology in practice work to promote marital well-being. Furthermore, our findings suggest the necessity of promoting husbands’ endorsement of less traditional gender ideology for improving marital well-being in contemporary Chinese society.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalSex Roles
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2020

Keywords

  • Chinese couples
  • Dual careers
  • Family work relationship
  • Gender role
  • Marital satisfaction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gender Studies
  • Social Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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