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Marital Dysfunction


The institution of marriage is in a state of great evolution, changing in response to rapidly shifting social values and norms. Indeed, even the definition of marriage is the subject of much heated social and political debate; it is one of the 'hot button' topics in both the scientific and lay press. In the context of such social transition, it is not at all surprising that there has been a rapid increase in relationship distress and dysfunction, evidenced by substantial increases in marital separations and divorce during the last century. Marital dysfunction manifests itself in a number of different ways and is very often marked by deficits in commitment to the relationship, low levels of mutual caring behaviors between the partners, problems with communication, and corrosive conflict resolutions skills. In turn, many dyads seek professional help to address the myriad of relationship problems in efforts to save their marriages in the context of multiple