School of Behavioral Sciences
Doctor of Education in Community Care and Counseling (EdD)
Marriage, African American, Love, Successful, Long-term, Nuclear Family
Counseling | Social and Behavioral Sciences
Smith, Derrick L., "The African American Nuclear Family: Investigating the Healthy Habits of Successful Long-Term Marriages in The African American Community" (2022). Doctoral Dissertations and Projects. 3391.
This phenomenological study sought to understand what contributed to the success of long-term marriages in the African American community. Long-term marriage was defined as those lasting 20 years or more. The family systems theory developed by Dr. Murray Bowen guided this study. The study employed a phenomenological approach to qualitative inquiry. Due to the national health crisis, all interviews were conducted through a Zoom conferencing platform. Nine married couples who have been married for at least 20 years or more participated in the study. The following criteria had to be met to participate in the study: race, length of the marriage, and religious importance. Data collection methods included interviewing, direct observation, and journaling. The researcher analyzed data using Moustakas’ transcendental phenomenological data analysis. Four major themes emerged from the data: collaboration, communication, commitment, and religiosity.