Written By: Donald Bruce Ross, Jerry Gale, Kandauda Wickrama, Joseph Goetz, Matthew James Vowels, and Yabin Tang
The deleterious nature of U.S. economic recessions over the last several decades highlight a need to investigate the role of family economic strain on families. The current study explored the impact of family economic strain on marital quality and marital stability through dyadic associations of marital support and work–family conflict of 370 married couples over a 12-year period (1989–2001) through an actor–partner interdependence model, encompassing two major U.S. recessions. Guided by family stress and coping theory, findings are consistent with past research indicating the negative impact of family economic strain on marital quality and marital stability; however, this impact may be mitigated through the mediation of positive perceptions of marital support and work–family conflict. Implications suggest financial counselors should consider the lasting influence of economic strain on families, and how the psychosocial resources of martial support and managing work–family conflict may promote relationship quality and stability.