Marriage, Parenthood, And Happiness

Findings from research on marriage, parenthood, and happiness have been mixed, sometimes showing little difference between parents and non-parents in terms of overall life satisfaction, and sometimes showing that being a parent is associated with lower levels of happiness and relationship satisfaction.

But data from a Pew Research survey suggest that when it comes to happiness, marriage may be more important than parenthood.  "Among married adults, 36% of those with children and 39% of those with no children were “very happy” with their life. By contrast, 23% of non-married adults with children and 22% of non-married childless adults said they were very happy. Single parents were more likely than any other group to say they were “not too happy” with their life (25%)."

Interestingly, the survey also found that "those who gave themselves high ratings as parents were among the most likely to say they were very happy with their life. The reverse was true, too."

Read more: resources:
Exploring the Second Shift: A Data-Driven Learning Guide (
Gallup Healthways Wellbeing Index Interactive (
Frederique Laubepin

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