Marriage is a social institution that forms the bases of human communication in which a man and a woman are attracted to each other. The genesis of marriage and family can be traced to the Holy Bible. God ordained marriage for three purposes: for companionship, pleasure and procreation. Marriage is a socially sanctioned union, typically between one man and one woman usually called husband and wife. The type and functions of marriage vary from culture to culture. Legally sanctioned marriages are generally conducted between heterosexual couples, although there are a few countries that recognize same-sex marriage (Broude, 2004). The prevailing view towards marriage is that it is based on emotional attachment between the partners and entered into voluntarily.
Marriage is perceived by Waite and Gallargher (2011) as a social institution under which a man and a woman establish their decision to live as husband and wife by legal commitment and or religious ceremonies. One ultimate thing that must be born in mind is that marriage institution is not accidental, but meant to achieve certain purposes. Marriage is also a socially acknowledged and approved sexual union between two adult individuals (Amato & Deboer, 2011). It is a unique institution that affirms and supports a distinct sociology in human culture; bridging of the gender gap, facilitates the generation of life through the fusion of sexes; and promotes the birth right of children to know, to be connected to, and to be in stable relationship with their natural parents (Papeboes & Whitehead, 2011). Marriage is a legal union between a man and a woman as husband and wife, which further connotes matrimony, wedlock, alliance, association and union (Ariyo, 2005).
Deducing from the definitions given above, certain purposes that constitute marriage are unveiled as follows: companionship; social integration of persons, approved sexual union; mutual commitment; mutual growth, bridging of the gender gap; and promoting the birth right of children. National polls showed that what people consider being very important in marriage (that is, love, sexual fidelity and ability to talk about feelings) have been fairly similar over the past two decades (Roper Organization, 2010). It was also found that a person’s beliefs about marriage and how marital adjustment was achieved might significantly affect one’s expectations and readiness for marriage (Larson, 2008, 2012; Larson & Holman, 2014).
According to Thomas (2002), marriage is more than physical attraction, biological union and social integration. It involves total commitment, self-donation to one another, and taking responsibilities that lead to mutual well-being. Marriage celebration may differ from culture to culture and from religion to religion. However, most people enter into it with the right expectations, joy and happiness with the full sense of accomplishing the purpose for which marriage is established. This is corroborated by Esere (2002) that marriage is usually contracted amidst joy, happiness and merry-making for the couple, family members and friends.
One of the fields of adjustment in human’s life is the subject of marriage so as to successful and satisfactory marriage necessitates a stable level of marital adjustment (Tigari, et al. 2006). Marital adjustment is harmony and empathy in achieving common goals of life between husband and wife that leads to satisfaction from living together. Adjustment between husband and wife allows them to avoid conflicts or to solve them appropriately, in a way that they both feel satisfied with the marriage and relationship with each other (Chen, et al., 2007). Marital adjustment has also been set forth as one of the most important factors in determining stability and permanence of marital relationship (Gaal, 2005).
According to the theory of Luck and Valas, marital adjustment is defined as externalizing each one of couples in a fixed situation (Aliakbari, 2010). Marital adjustment is one of the expressions used extensively in family and marital studies. This expression is related to many other expressions like marital success and happiness and marital satisfaction. Marital adjustment is a multi- dimensional expression that clarifies different levels of marriage and it is a process that is created during the life of couples, because its requisite is conformity of tastes, knowing personality features, establishing behavioural laws and forming relationship patterns. So marital on different aspects of life’s quality such as spiritual health of couples, satisfaction from life, self-efficacy, satisfaction from job and salary rate, educational success and even the length of lifetime and various studies confirm the importance of marital adjustment (Byers, 2005; Santtila, 2008).
On the base of research performed, marital adjustment has four (4) main components including dyadic satisfaction, dyadic cohesion, dyadic consensus, affectional expression. Dyadic cohesion is the rate of cohesion couples have over important affairs like managing economical issues of family and making important decisions. Dyadic consensus refers to the fact that how often couples are involved with common activity and affection expression is also related to the fact that how often couples express affection and love to each other and finally dyadic satisfaction consists of the rate of happiness in relationships and also the frequency of experienced conflicts in communication (Huston and Melz, 2004).
Marital adjustment seems complex than it may appear. Basically, in marriage, two persons adjust to each other's sensory, motor, emotional and intellectual capacities. On the personality level they must adjust together to their total environment, including such matters as a new household, children, provision and preparation of food, relatives, friends, relations and work (Fonseca, 2006).
The success of marital life much depends upon the success in marital adjustment by the husband and wife. Marital maladjustment results in conflicts and tensions and many a time divorce. In general different factors are effective on marital adjustment. Ahmadi (2006) in his study expresses the effective factors on marital adjustment as following: background-personal factors such as the original family, social, self-efficacy and cultural factors and individual characters. two-side relationship factors such as harmony (in religion, education, general characters). Of course of these factors, religious commitment and self-efficacy as one of the basic principles of a good life is effective on marital adjustment.
Religion is an organized system of beliefs including ethical values, customs, and participation in religious society to have stronger belief in God or a superior power (Kiaee, et al., 2010). Religion is considered as one of the most effective spiritual fulcrums which is able to provide the meaning of life in each moment of lifetime and rescue a person in special conditions from suspension and meaninglessness by providing explanatory fulcrum (Bahrami, 2009). Religious belief is an effective way to confront disasters and painful experience and symptoms of illness. It also influences on the way of humane communication at the time of hardships and difficulties (Kiaee, et al., 2010).
Azarbaijani (2008) defines religious orientation as following: the general approach one adopted from religion. It means a person has a collection of beliefs, deeds and special ceremonies in relationship with an almighty (holy) creature. Religious orientation can be considered as equivalent of the word “religiousness”.
Self-efficacy, according to Tella and Ayeni (2006), can be defined as the individual's perceived ability to attain designated types of performance and achieve a specific result. In the study of self-efficacy of married couples, Tella and Ayeni (2006) found out that self-efficacy propels married couples to keep trying to accomplish their goals, and make good decisions that translate into meaningful achievements. They choose to perform more challenging tasks and are more creative. Schwarzer and Smith (2005) studied the success of women in marriage and confirm that self-efficacy has a predictive power in assessing marital adjustment.
Different researches have already confirmed the existence of positive relationship between religion and self-efficacy and marital adjustment. Religion can strengthen marital relationships and make it firm (Call and Heaton, 2007). In Demaris study, religiousness is reported to be the most important factors in marital adjustment (Demaris, et al., 2010). Ahmadi (2006) in a study concluded that there is a positive and significant correlation between religious commitments among couples and marital adjustment. It means that the more religious commitment the couples have, the more marital adjustment they experience (Demaris, et al. 2010). In Taibe Yeganeh study, the results show that the positive effect of religion in marital adjustment is undeniable (Yeganeh, 2013).
Findings suggest that a happy marriage is conducive to a long, healthy life (Waite & Gallagher 2010). One wonders why the joy of marriage could turn soar suddenly. This experience by couple may be because they lack the ability to face the challenge and problems that arise and, or they are yet to understand factors that favour marital adjustment. The reality of it is that each marriage has its own unique challenges and problems. The question is not whether they will arise but how to face them when they do (Powell, 2005). The unfortunate thing, according to Ariyo (2004) is that when these challenges occur, many marriages become disestablished. Many marriages become disestablished when the couples are not able to manage challenges such as challenges of resolving their conflict, sexual fulfilment, good communication, mutual commitment, child bearing and rearing. The phenomenon of marital problem is world-wide, not limited to Nigeria alone. The statistics released by National Centre for Health, Marriage and Divorce (2003), revealed that divorce rate in Canada, England and Wales Greece, the Netherlands and United States have more than double since 1970. This research therefore is aimed to investigate religion and self-efficacy as correlates of marital adjustment among married persons in Ethiope West Local Government Area of Delta State.
Human society is dynamic. There are constant changes in social values mass media, science and technology. These changes have come so rapidly that the new social problems, such as severe permissiveness and increase in divorce cases have led to new morality including the breaking down of traditional norms. Such breakdown of values has numerous implications. They include sexually transmitted diseases, acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) unwanted preg-nancies and abortions, abandonment as well as single-parenthood.
These implications have different dimensions and are causing great problems in the marital world. These changes are capable of stretching family relationships to a breaking point. When this happens, love which is the true bedrock of marriage collapses. There is a communication breakdown. Sex life becomes unsatisfactory. Nothing holds together, and mistrust sets in. Marriage and family is designed for the development of human race but unfortunately, in the words of Ebiai and Bumba (2004), many families are enduring what they ought to enjoy. This phenomenon has not been adequately researched into our society. This study therefore investigate the religion and self-efficacy as correlates of marital adjustment among the married persons in Ethiope West Local Government Area of Delta State.
The purpose of the study is to investigate religion and self-efficacy as correlates of marital adjustment among married persons in Ethiope West Local Government Area of Delta State. Specifically, the study will address the following:
The following research questions has been raised to guide the study:
The following hypotheses shall guide the study:
This study would be of benefit to couples, marriage/family counsellors, social workers, business organisations and the nation at large in the following ways:
For couples, when the cause of marital maladjustment is known, the couple will be able to improve or manage the causal factor(s) leading to maladjustment in their home. For instance, if communication is the major problem among couples, this study will provide measures on how to communicate effectively thereby establishing a stabilized home which will enhance the upbringing of proper children and it will better the lot of the society. Marriage/family counsellors will benefit immensely from the result of this study because it will help in assisting their clients to solve various problems having known the likely factors that predict marital adjustment in marriages, implying that, the study will help counsellors to offer qualitative counsel to couples and family members that come for counselling. Social workers are part of helping professionals; this study will enable them (social workers) to offer qualitative help to individuals, couples and family members that come for assistance.
Stable marriages enhance the total well-being of every member of such a marriage/family, therefore, business organisations will benefit from this study because the employed individuals from stabilized homes will contribute intelligently to the growth of the organization. When such an individual is becoming less productive; the organization may help her seek for professional assistance of a counsellor. This, in turn, will again enhance effective delivery of the employee. Every marriage/family is a unit in the society/nation, and when there is peace and stability in marriages, the nation at large will experience peace and growth in all spheres of life.
This study will focus on religion and self-efficacy as correlates of marital adjustment among married persons. The study is limited to Ethiope East Local Government Area of Delta State.
Religion: This is an organized collection of beliefs, cultural systems, and world views that relate humanity to an order of existence.
Self-Efficacy: This refers to an individual's belief in his or her capacity to execute behaviours necessary to produce specific performance attainments
Correlates: This refers to having a mutual relationship or connection, in which one thing affects or depends on another.
Marital Adjustment: This is the process during which partners in a marriage adapt and change to their new roles complementing each acting as a team opposed to two separate units
Married Persons: These are two people who are married to each other
Local Government Area: This is an administrative division of a country that a local government is responsible for