Degree Date


Document Type

Dissertation - Public Access

Degree Name

Psy.D. Doctor of Clinical Psychology

Academic Discipline

Clinical Psychology - Florida School of Professional Psychology

First Advisor

Gary Howell, Psy.D.

Second Advisor

Patricia Dixon, Psy.D.


Infidelity rates are high in the United States and one of the leading causes for divorce between married couples. Research indicates that the Black community has a higher proclivity to infidelity compared to Whites. Black women have a higher chance of ending up in undissolved marriages than other races (Jarama et al., 2007). Previous studies have explored reasons behind the increased rates of high marital instability among Black women, including: the sex ratio imbalance, high mortality, and incarceration among Black men. Since African Americans are considered more religious than the general population, this literature review identified the need for an intervention to help clinical psychologists and spiritual leaders assist Black Christian women in addressing the impact of infidelity and its aftermath. Three research topics were explored (a) the effect of Christianity on the perception of infidelity, (b) the use of Christian practices to deal with infidelity, and (c) the exploration of various ways clinical psychologists and Black church clergy could treat infidelity. Undoubtedly, the importance of maintaining cultural competence is necessary while working with diverse groups. Future directions could include a review of the research regarding how Black Christian women cope as the adulterer in marriages and collecting data on Black Christian men and men in other minority racial/ethnic groups as it relates to infidelity.