Electronic Theses and Dissertations





Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Counseling Psychology

Committee Chair

Sara Bridges

Committee Member

Yonghong Jade Xu

Committee Member

Elin Ovrebo

Committee Member

Alison Happel-Parkins


Sexual satisfaction is associated with many personal and relational benefits (Sprecher, 2002; Yeh et al., 2006). However, one cannot assume that the factors that influence sexual satisfaction are universal. There are many cultural, contextual, and relational factors that vary based on one's background (Drew, 2003; McClelland, 2014; Richgels, 1992). In particular for Armenian American women, who typically come from an immigrant background, the degree to which they associate with the United States culture could influence their sexual beliefs and practices (Dagirmanjian, 2005). Moreover, ascribing to traditional or egalitarian gender roles could impact their sexual satisfaction as well, especially since the purity of the females in an Armenian family is central to the respect of the family as a whole (Bakalian, 2011; Dagirmanjian, 2005). As they transition into the American culture, Armenian American women are likely to experience conflict when they do not follow traditional and conservative expectations, which could lead to guilt related to violating personal standards of proper sexual conduct. The focus of the present study was to more fully understand the influence of acculturation to the United States and gender role ideology on the sexual satisfaction of Armenian American women. As part of this exploration, the potential mediating role of sex guilt was also examined. This study analyzed data on 217 Armenian women who lived across the United States. Many of the results do not support previous research linking acculturation, gender role ideology, or sex guilt to sexual satisfaction. For example, this study did not find significant relationships between acculturation and sexual satisfaction, gender role ideology and sexual satisfaction, and sex guilt and sexual satisfaction. In addition, sex guilt did not mediate the relationship between both acculturation and gender role ideology and sexual satisfaction. The study found that 58% of the variance of sex guilt was accounted for by acculturation and gender role ideology and that 1.2% of the variance of sexual satisfaction was explained by the combination of acculturation, gender role ideology, and sex guilt. The findings' implications for counseling psychology, future research directions, and study limitations are discussed.


Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

Dissertation or thesis originally submitted to the local University of Memphis Electronic Theses & dissertation (ETD) Repository.