The mediational role of intimate partner acceptance and psychological adjustment in the relationship between intimate partner control and marital adjustment

Iyiaydin A. A., SÜMER Z.

CURRENT PSYCHOLOGY, vol.42, no.2, pp.1598-1608, 2023 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 42 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s12144-021-01468-2
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, IBZ Online, BIOSIS, Business Source Elite, Business Source Premier, Psycinfo
  • Page Numbers: pp.1598-1608
  • Keywords: Interpersonal acceptance and rejection theory, Intimate partner control, Psychological adjustment, Marital adjustment, Intimate partner acceptance, PARENTAL ACCEPTANCE, CONTROLLING BEHAVIOR, PHYSICAL AGGRESSION, FEELING UNDERSTOOD, FIT INDEXES, SATISFACTION, CHILDHOOD, VIOLENCE, QUALITY, ADULTS
  • Middle East Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Grounded in Interpersonal Acceptance-Rejection Theory (IPARTheory), this exploratory study investigated the associations among perceived intimate partner rejection, intimate partner control, psychological maladjustment, and marital adjustment. Perceived behavioral control in intimate partner relationships has been under-researched within the context of IPARTheory. Although the role of behavioral control in child/adolescent-parent relationships has been well-established, insufficient exploration of the phenomenon in marriage relationships calls for new empirical findings. The conveniently selected sample consisted of 624 (360 female, 264 male) married individuals living in big cities of Turkey. Intimate Partner Acceptance-Rejection/Control Questionnaire, Personality Assessment Questionnaire, Dyadic Adjustment Scale, and Demographic Form were utilized to gather data. Structural Equation Modeling was utilized as the primary analysis to test the proposed sequential mediational model of the study. The results indicated that intimate partner behavioral control was significantly and indirectly associated with marital adjustment through the mediating effects of intimate partner rejection and psychological maladjustment. Moreover, intimate partner rejection had direct effects on psychological maladjustment and marital adjustment. The indirect effect of intimate partner rejection on marital adjustment via the mediation of psychological maladjustment was found to be significant. Lastly, the sequential mediation by intimate partner rejection and psychological maladjustment in the relationship between intimate partner control and marital adjustment was also significant. This study adds to the existing literature on IPARTheory by showing that perceived intimate partner behavioral control is quite negatively related to marital adjustment. Results underscore how perceived behavioral control by a spouse triggers rejection and diminishes the psychological adjustment of the controlled partner.