Migration, culture conflict and psychological well-being among Turkish-British married couples

Baltas Z., Steptoe A.

ETHNICITY & HEALTH, vol.5, no.2, pp.173-180, 2000 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 5 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2000
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/713667445
  • Journal Name: ETHNICITY & HEALTH
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.173-180
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: No


This study assessed culture conflict within marriage and the psychological well-being of Turkish men and women and their British partners. The hypothesis was tested that among migrants who are well established economically and socially within a new country, the perception of cultural conflict within marriage might override acculturation as a determinant of psychological well-being. Interviews were carried out with 33 relatively affluent Turkish men (n = 23) and women (n = 10) who had been born in Turkey and had been resident in the UK for an average of 12.2 +/- 6.2 years, and with their British partners. A marital cultural difficulties index was constructed from ratings of problems stemming from cultural differences in 22 aspects of daily living. Depression, assessed with the Beck Depression Inventory, was correlated with marital cultural difficulties in both Turkish and British respondents, independently of sex, age and duration of marriage. Depression scores were higher among respondents who reported greater cultural conflict. No associations of psychological well-being with acculturation (indexed by maintenance of traditional Turkish activities), age, years of marriage, or level of contact with Turkey were observed. The results highlight the implications of residual cultural conflict within mixed marriages for psychological well-being.