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03.02.2015 | Research Paper | Ausgabe 2/2016

Journal of Happiness Studies 2/2016

Are “We” Good? A Longitudinal Study of We-Talk and Stress Coping in Dual-Earner Couples

Zeitschrift:
Journal of Happiness Studies > Ausgabe 2/2016
Autoren:
Wei-Fang Lin, Lung Hung Chen, Tsui-Shan Li

Abstract

We applied the linguistic approach and a longitudinal design to investigate how dual-earner couples address work–family stress and how they reasoned with communal coping to reduce work–family stress. Although previous research indicated that we-talk may be a marker for communal coping, we argued that gender may differ in the psychological meanings of we-talk. We hypothesized that gender moderated the relationships between we-talk and satisfaction in both work and marriage. Thirty-one dual-earner couples were interviewed about how they coped with work–family stress. The data concerning work and marital satisfaction were collected twice, once during the interview and once 2 years later. The results indicated significant interactions between gender and we-talk in regard to both marital and work satisfaction. Specifically, we-talk that was used by wives increased their husbands’ work and marital satisfaction. In contrast, we-talk that was used by husbands decreased their wives’ work satisfaction. Our findings highlighted that the psychological meanings of we-talk were dependent on the talking context. The applications for reducing work–family stress were discussed.

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