Misery loves company? Linkages between actual vs. Desired couple work arrangements and women's mental health. By: Swendener, Alexis. Community, Work & Family. Apr2021, Vol. 24 Issue 2, p173-192. 20p.

Match or mismatch between the demands of work, home, and the broader community shape individuals’ well-being, leading to some recognition of mismatch as a public health issue. Using a life-course framework, I draw on farm families as an illustrative case to explore how couple work arrangements influence individual well-being. Farm couples face many demands within a family-based business, including various work and family roles in a changing farming economy. Using survey data from women on family farms in the U.S., I explore the association between perceiving incongruence in actual and desired couple work arrangements and women’s mental health. Results indicate that women who perceive any type of work incongruence (their own, their partner’s, or both) do report worse mental health. Specifically, women’s own individual work mismatch is significantly associated with increases in depressive symptoms while shared incongruence or partner-only incongruence is not. In addition, feeling control over one’s life and being satisfied with the viability of farming for a livable family income are important pathways in understanding how incongruence is associated with mental health. Broadly, I highlight that being the only member of a couple working an undesired role may be particularly harmful for women’s well-being.