Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Marriage Suffers More If the Husband's Depression Is First

Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Marriage Suffers More If the Husband's Depression Is First

Article excerpt

WASHINGTON -- Among married couples in which both partners are depressed, the degree of marital satisfaction is lower for both husbands and wives when the husband develops depression first, Kimberly A. Van Orden said at the annual meeting of the Association for Advancement of Behavior Therapy.

Prior studies have shown that a person with a depressive disorder is more likely to marry someone else who already has a depressive disorder, said Ms. Van Orden, a graduate student in clinical psychology at Florida State University.

However, in some cases of concordant depression, one partner will develop depressive symptoms and the other partner will "catch" depression and develop his or her own symptoms.

In a study of 304 couples who were part of a larger family study, 26% of wives and 22% of husbands reported depression, and 23 couples were concordant.

Of the concordant couples, the husband had the first onset of depression in 61%, and the wife had the first onset of depression in 39%, according to Ms. …

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