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Factors associated with life satisfaction among married women in rural China: a cross-sectional study based on large-scale samples

Authors Huang H, Liu S, Sharma A, Zou F, Tian F, Wu H

Received 13 July 2018

Accepted for publication 3 October 2018

Published 2 November 2018 Volume 2018:11 Pages 525—533


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Professor Igor Elman

Hao Huang,1 Siqi Liu,1 Aditi Sharma,2 Futing Zou,1 Fangqiong Tian,1 Hui Wu1

1Department of Social Medicine, School of Public Health, China Medical University, Shenyang, Liaoning Province, China; 2Department of Public Health Science, College of Medicine, Pennsylvania State University, Hershey, PA, USA

Purpose: The living environment in rural China may predispose individuals there to low life satisfaction (LS). This study aims to evaluate factors that affect LS among married women in rural China.
Materials and methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted in rural Liaoning Province in China, in 2015. Out of 3,900 married women, 3,385 (86.8%) completed a questionnaire survey. LS was assessed using the Satisfaction with Life Scale (SWLS), with 35 as the maximal possible score. Stress (quantified by the Perceived Stress Scale [PSS]), resilience (assessed by the Ego-Resiliency Scale [ERS]), and demographic and living/health conditions factors were collected through self-reported questionnaires. Hierarchical multiple regression and structural equation modeling were used to explore the contributing and mediating factors related to LS.
Results: The overall LS score was 18.94±4.96. A younger age, lower monthly income, presence of chronic diseases, left-behind status, and sense of marriage insecurity were negatively associated with LS. Perceived stress was a strong predictor of LS, as it explained 19.7% of the variance. Higher levels of resilience were related to higher levels of LS, explaining 15.4% of the variance. Resilience partially mediated the relationship between stress and LS for rural residents in China.
Conclusion: Overall, married women living in rural China experienced a relatively low level of LS. The construction of additional recreational facilities, provision of convenient access to medical information, facilitation of communication between couples, reduction of stress, and development of resilience could all be beneficial intervention strategies to improve LS for these rural residents.

Keywords: rural women, left-behind, life satisfaction, stress, resilience

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