“Together, We Are Strong”: A Qualitative Study of Happy, Enduring African American Marriages*

Authors

  • Loren D. Marks,

    Corresponding author
      **Loren D. Marks is an assistant professor in the School of Human Ecology at the Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803 (lorenm@lsu.edu).
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  • Katrina Hopkins,

    Corresponding author
      Katrina Hopkins recently completed her doctoral work in the School of Human Ecology at the Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803 (khopki2@lsu.edu).
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  • Cassandra Chaney,

    Corresponding author
      Cassandra Chaney is an assistant professor in the School of Human Ecology at the Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803 (cchaney@lsu.edu).
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  • Pamela A. Monroe,

    Corresponding author
      Pamela A. Monroe is a professor in the School of Social Work at the Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803 (pmonroe@lsu.edu).
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  • Olena Nesteruk,

    Corresponding author
      Olena Nesteruk is an assistant professor in the Department of Family and Child Studies at the Montclair State University, Montclair, NJ 07043 (nesteruko@mail.montclair.edu).
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  • Diane D. Sasser

    Corresponding author
      Diane D. Sasser is a professor in the School of Human Ecology and in the LSU AgCenter and Cooperative Extension Service, Baton Rouge, LA 70803 (dsasser@agcenter.lsu.edu).
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  • *

    We express our appreciation to Tanya Davis, Justin Wax, and Allison Rayburn for their assistance in conducting and analyzing the research presented in this paper. Partial funding support of this project was provided by the LSU Council on Research and by a Jack Shand Research Award. We are also indebted to constructive comments from the guest editor, editor, and blind reviewers. Most of all, we are grateful to the participant families who shared their time and experiences with us without monetary compensation.

**Loren D. Marks is an assistant professor in the School of Human Ecology at the Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803 (lorenm@lsu.edu).

Katrina Hopkins recently completed her doctoral work in the School of Human Ecology at the Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803 (khopki2@lsu.edu).

Cassandra Chaney is an assistant professor in the School of Human Ecology at the Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803 (cchaney@lsu.edu).

Pamela A. Monroe is a professor in the School of Social Work at the Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803 (pmonroe@lsu.edu).

Olena Nesteruk is an assistant professor in the Department of Family and Child Studies at the Montclair State University, Montclair, NJ 07043 (nesteruko@mail.montclair.edu).

Diane D. Sasser is a professor in the School of Human Ecology and in the LSU AgCenter and Cooperative Extension Service, Baton Rouge, LA 70803 (dsasser@agcenter.lsu.edu).

Abstract

Abstract: Thirty African American married couples (N = 60 individuals) were interviewed regarding the challenges and benefits of their happy, enduring marriages. Qualitative coding and analysis revealed 4 key themes: (1) Challenges in African American Marriages, (2) Overcoming External Challenges to Marriage, (3) Resolving Intramarital Conflict, and (4) Unity and the Importance of Being “Equally Yoked.” Supporting qualitative data are presented in connection with each theme. Implications for enduring marriages among African Americans specifically are discussed.

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