Journal article Open Access

What I wanted vs what I have: Impact of pre and post marital expectations on marital satisfaction of married young adults

Fawad, Rameen; Shahid, Mahnoor; Shamim, Parisey; Zubair, Alishbah

The purpose of this study is to ascertain pre-marital and post-marital expectations, the differences between pre- and post-marital expectations, and the impact of post-marital expectations on current marital satisfaction. This study employs a mixed design with a correlational technique. This study includes 164 married young adults (n=75 males & n=89 females) in Pakistan, all of whom have been married for at least six months and are between the ages of 19 and 40. The sampling technique employed is convenience-based. In this study, the Couples Satisfaction Index (CSI-16) and the Marital Scales are utilised as measures (Pre and Post Forms). The demographic information sheet was presented first, followed by the CSI-16, and then the Marital Scales, with the pre-marital form being presented first and the post-marital form being presented second. According to findings, there is a significant difference between pre- and post-marriage expectations. In addition, post-marriage expectations were found to impact participants' current marital satisfaction. The majority of the participants were female, employed, parents, upper middle class, and part of a joint family. This study contributes to the existing literature on pre-marital and post-marital expectations and marital satisfaction, can be used in marital therapy, can be applied to the culture and context of Pakistan, and offers an explanation of certain marital expectations and their impact on marital satisfaction.


Files (752.2 kB)
Name Size
752.2 kB Download
  • Baldwin, J. H., Ellis, G. D., & Baldwin, B. M. (1999). Marital satisfaction: An examination of its relationship to spouse support and congruence of commitment among runners. Leisure Sciences, 21(2), 117-131.

  • Bhatti, R. S., & Juvva, S. (2006). Epigenetic model of marital expectations. Contemporary Family Therapy, 28(1).

  • Campbell, K., Wright, D. W., & Flores, C. G. (2012). Newlywed women's marital expectations: Lifelong monogamy? Journal of Divorce & Remarriage, 53(2), 108-125.

  • Deressu, G., & Girma, Z. (2019). The relationship between premarital expectation and marital satisfaction among married couples in Bole sub-city of Addis Ababa city administration. Psychological Research, 9(10), 387-400.

  • Epstein, N., & Eidelson, R. J. (1981). Unrealistic beliefs of clinical couples: Their relationship to expectations, goals and satisfaction. The American Journal of Family Therapy, 9(4), 13-22.

  • Funk, J. L., & Rogge, R. D. (2007). Testing the ruler with item response theory: Increasing precision of measurement for relationship satisfaction with the couples satisfaction index. Journal of Family Psychology, 21(4), 572-583.

  • Galloway, L., Engstrom, E., & Emmers-Sommer, T. M. (2015). Does movie viewing cultivate young people's unrealistic expectations about love and marriage? Marriage & Family Review, 51(8), 687-712.

  • Goslin, O. (2014). Gender differences in attitudes towards marriage among young adults [Bachelor's thesis, Dublin Business School]. eSource.

  • Gottman, J. M., & Krokoff, L. J. (1989). Marital interaction and satisfaction: A longitudinal view. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 57(1), 47.

  • Johnson, K. D. (2015). Marital expectation fulfillment and its relationship to height of marital expectations, optimism, and relationship self-efficacy among married individuals. Dissertations. 1573.

  • Kelly, D. L., & Burgoon, J. K. (1991). Understanding marital satisfaction and couple type as functions of relationship expectation. Human Communication Research, 18(1), 40-69.

  • Khan, A. K. (2020, June 13). Divorce, family dispute cases surge in Karachi. Bol News.

  • Lin, Y.-C., & Raghubir, P. (2005). Gender differences in unrealistic optimism about marriage and divorce: Are men more optimistic and women more realistic? Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 31(2), 198-207.

  • Litzinger, S., & Gordon, K. C. (2005). Exploring relationships among communication, sexual satisfaction, and marital satisfaction. Journal of Sex &Marital Therapy, 31(5), 409-424.

  • Murray, S. L., Griffin, D. W., Derrick, J. L., Harris, B., Aloni, M., & Leder, S. (2011). Tempting fate or inviting happiness?: Unrealistic idealization prevents the decline of marital satisfaction. Psychological Science, 22(5), 619-626.

  • Park, S. S., & Rosén, L. A. (2013). The marital scales: Measurement of intent, attitudes, and aspects regarding marital relationships. Journal of Divorce & Remarriage, 54(4), 295-312.

  • Qadir, F., Silva, P. D., Prince, M., & Khan, M. (2005). Marital satisfaction in Pakistan: A pilot investigation. Sexual and Relationship Therapy, 20(2), 195-209.

  • Rahman, F. I., Sharif, A., & Naz, S. (2019). Marital expectations of unmarried young adults: A prevalence based mixed design study [Unpublished bachelor's thesis]. Institute of Professional Psychology, Bahria University, Karachi Campus.

  • Rios, C. M. (2010). The relationship between premarital advice, expectations, and marital satisfaction. All Graduate Theses and Dissertations, 536.

  • Segrin, C., & Nabi, R. L. (2002). Does television viewing cultivate unrealistic expectations about marriage? Journal of Communication, 52(2), 247-263.

  • Sharp, E. A., & Ganong, L.H. (2000). Raising awareness about marital expectations: Are unrealistic beliefs changed by integrative teaching? Family Relations, 49(1), 71-76.

  • Sullivan, B. F., & Schwebel, A. I. (1995). Relationship beliefs and expectations of satisfaction in marital relationships: Implications for family practitioners. The Family Journal, 3(4), 298-305.

  • Villa, M. B., & Prette, Z.A.P.D. (2013). Marital satisfaction: The role of social skills of husbands and wives. Paidéia (Ribeirão Preto), 23(56), 379-388.

All versions This version
Views 317317
Downloads 170170
Data volume 127.9 MB127.9 MB
Unique views 296296
Unique downloads 158158


Cite as