Few studies in Asia have examined the association among depressive symptoms, relationship satisfaction, sexual dysfunction and emotional expressiveness. Examining the role of emotional expressiveness in the context of depression and relationships is important as it can be a point for therapeutic intervention. Materials and Methods: Guided by the Marital Discord Model of Depression and based on data from partnered women in Singapore (n = 193), we conducted a path analysis to examine the mediating role of relationship satisfaction and sexual dysfunction in the link between difficulty in emotional expression and depressive symptoms. Results: Controlling for age and health, lower relationship satisfaction (β = -0.213; P <0.001), higher sexual dysfunction (β = 0.139; P = 0.010) and greater difficulty in emotional expression (β = 0.908; P <0.001) were associated with increased depressive symptoms. Relationship satisfaction partially mediated the association between emotional expressiveness and depressive symptoms (indirect effect, 0.169; 95% confidence interval, 0.043‒0.379). Conclusion: The findings suggest the importance of effective communication in mitigating relationship- and self-distress.
Marital relationship satisfaction accrues many benefits for both men and women, including greater physical and psychological well-being. Conversely, marital relationship dissatisfaction has been reported to be associated with negative outcomes such as psychiatric morbidity, poor health and decreased work satisfaction.
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