It’s true that marriage is not for everybody… or maybe it could be if one finds a person worth enough to spend an entire lifetime with… which would make it sound more like sour grapes for those who do not… well it turns out that what that might really mean is that it’s not for women.
YET, according to a professor of behavioural science from the London School of Economics who spoke about women’s happiness at the Hay Festival this weekend… the desire to settle down and start a family may actually have a negative impact on our well being!
However (as all women already know), this is the opposite for men. Why? Because they benefit from marriage due to it making them ‘calm down’ and take less risks.
The professor said: “The healthiest and happiest population sub-group are women who never married or had children. 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.”
Funnily enough, it looks like levels of happiness for married women were only found to be higher when their spouse was in the room with them!
“Married people are happier than other population sub-groups but only when their spouse is in the room when they’re asked how happy they are,” he explained. “When the spouse is not present: f***ing miserable.”
Even with all the benefits of staying single and childless, Dolan acknowledges that having a partner and a baby are viewed by some as signs of success, and this could lead some women to feel unhappy and as if they are failing if they don’t manage to find them.
He added: “You see a single woman of 40, who has never had children [and you think], ‘That’s a shame isn’t it, maybe one day you’ll meet the right guy and that’ll change’.
“No, maybe she’ll meet the wrong guy… maybe she’ll meet a guy who makes her less happy and healthy, and die sooner.”
Certainly something to think about…