The next time someone ask you why you aren’t married, or have a child, tell them that you’re happy. And if you have the time, point them to this study by one of the leading experts in happiness, Paul Dolan which says unmarried and childless women are the happiest.
BUZZ Fam, I know you may have had hunches about this, but now we’ve got the science to back it up. Unmarried and childless women are the happiest people. And they are more likely to live longer than their married and child-rearing peers.
Paul Dolan, a professor of behavioural science at the London School of Economics, said the latest evidence showed that the traditional markers used to measure success did not correlate with happiness – particularly marriage and raising children.
‘If you’re a man, you should probably get married; if you’re a woman, don’t bother,’— Dolan
“We do have some good longitudinal data following the same people over time, but I am going to do a massive disservice to that science and just say: if you’re a man, you should probably get married; if you’re a woman, don’t bother.”
Because apparently men benefited more from marriage as it “calm them down”
“You take less risks, you earn more money at work, and you live a little longer. She, on the other hand, has to put up with that, and dies sooner than if she never married.
In his latest book, Happy Ever After, Dolan cites evidence from the American Time Use Survey (ATUS), which compared levels of pleasure and misery in unmarried, married, divorced, separated and widowed individuals.
Other studies have measured some financial and health benefits in being married for both men and women on average, which Dolan said could be attributed to higher incomes and emotional support, allowing married people to take risks and seek medical help.
According to Dolan, Women’s health was mostly unaffected by marriage, with middle-aged married women even being at higher risk of physical and mental conditions than their single counterparts.
Despite the benefits of a single, childless lifestyle for women, Dolan said that the existing narrative that marriage and children were signs of success meant that the stigma could lead some single women to feel unhappy.