The Marriage Equation:
A practical theory for predicting divorce &
scientifically-based marital therapy

Gathering a Couple’s Data

Data Representation: Typical Data for Low Risk Couple

Typical High Risk Couple’s Interaction

Experimental Data, Model Predictions & Comparison with Statistics of the Control Study

Husband-Wife Space: Evolution of an Interaction

Relationship (H,W) Phase Space

Example of the Scoring of a Couple’s Discussion

A little bit of history to motivate the model

A little bit of algebra

Mathematical Model of the interaction

Mathematical Model: Interpretation

Influence Function Calculated over Complete 15 minute Discussion – Mathematical Best Fit

Couple 1: Influence functions from analysis of the video

Terminology & Basic Interaction Styles

Basic interaction styles change over courtship, early and long term marriage

Interaction: Conflict-Avoiding Marriage

Basic Marriage Types

Mathematical Model: Interpretation

Uninfluenced Steady State (IHW =0, IWH =0):

Mathematical Model of the interaction

Graphical Interpretation of Model

Effect of uninfluenced
steady state

Couple 1: Husband and Wife’s interaction lines      Divorce/Therapy?

Couple 2: Husband and Wife’s interaction lines – before
workshop therapy

Relationship (H,W) Phase Space

Stable, Happy Marriage



Pre-Marital Therapy

Post-Marital Therapy

 What Have We Gained from the Mathematics?
Three practical goals for an empirical based marital therapy & rationale for the
marital experiments

What Have We Gained from the Mathematics?

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