Single vs married is always a hot topic to debate. A lot of people claim that marriage is a source of all happiness and many believe in the “live happily ever after” slogan from fairy tales. But, if you are contemplating – Is being single better than being married, then this post is an eye opener.
Does being married help you live a long, happy life?
No, according to Bella DePaulo!
Bella DePaulo, social psychologist and professor at the University of California, Santa Barbara, wanted to challenge this “conventional wisdom” and told the same to the American Psychological Association’s annual convention in Denver.
People who are single “live their best, most authentic and most meaningful life” the psychologist claimed based on her years of research. Professor DePaulo said to the convention that she is “single, always have been and always will be”. There is an increasing number of people who choose to stay single, for they believe that “happily married” is a myth. She also validates her claims with facts and explains why Is being single better than being married.
Why Is being single better than being married?
Bella DePaulo started to investigate the results of being single vs married and came across 800 different studies (that mentioned single people) conducted in the last three decades. Some of the study results based on comparing people who stayed single with those who married showed that –
- Single people demonstrated a higher level of self-determination than their married counterparts.
- People who stayed single were found highly likely to experience continued growth and development in life.
In another study published in NCBI, comprising people who stayed single lifelong, such people –
- Were found to value and engage in meaningful work.
- Were more self-sufficient than married people
- Were less likely to experience negative behaviors or emotions
But, in the case of married people, it was just the opposite. The above data validates that singles too can live a long, happy, healthy life. Scroll down to know the reasons why being single is better than being married.
Single Vs Married: What’s the latest trend?
Now coming to statistics, as per Office for National Statistics figures:
- Before 2002, UK had 16.2 million single people compared to 23.7 million married people.
- In 2002, there were 12.5 million single people compared to 23 million married ones
As per the reports released in 2019:
- The number of people aged 16 years and above and married living in England and Wales has decreased in 2018 to 50.5%.
- The number of people aged 16 years and above who are single and never married has increased by 35.0% in 2018.
- The population of the same age group who live with a partner but never married has increased from 1.3 million people since 2008 to a total of 5.0 million in 2018.
- The number of married people who are under the age of 70 years has decreased but those above 70 years and above and married have increased from 50.3% in 2008 to 55.8% in 2018.
The situation is the same in the United States, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
- In 2014, more than 50% of Americans over age 16, were single.
- Whereas in 1976, only 37.4% of the population was unmarried.
Coming back to the question – “Is being single better?”, professor DePaulo’s research reveal that there is an increasing number of people who are single and never married, not only in the UK but in different parts of the world. Yet, people rarely acknowledge the growing popularity of “unmarried life”.
Research says you can be single and happy!!!
She said an increasing number of people are willingly single and it is the choice they have made consciously. And that is expressed by constructing their self-identity and accepting their new way of life. Those willingly single know how to be happy even without the knight in shining armour. Not all single people are depressed or frustrated or lonely.
According to a study published in Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, when compared to married people, single people are more connected to parents, friends, neighbors, and coworkers. Because when people get married, they become more insular. The surprising study findings explain why is being single better than being in a relationship. In short, being single beats being married
Why people can’t accept that being single beats married life?
The problem with the world is that they focus on the loneliness and other negativities associated with not getting married. But what about the beauty and benefit of solitude that most people enjoy being single? How can one ignore that?
Please know that married people are supported by the “relentless celebration of marriage and coupling and weddings that I call matrimania” professor DePaulo said. N doubt, getting married gives you a plethora of benefits in terms of laws, legal and financial protections, and federal benefits. Aside of that cultural advantages too.
But, single people are doing as well as the married people are!
The world is in need of an accurate portrayal of the lives of people who stayed single and never married. And need honest revealations about single people – how they are strong, independent, and mentally resilient and live a meaningful life without getting married. There is a need for more research on never married single people to highlight the reasons why being single is better than being married.
Read about the science-backed benefits of being single here
However, in this so called modern society,
- Singlism is considered a crime.
- Unmarried, single people are marginalized, stigmatized, and tortured with various stereotypes and discrimination.
- Decades after decades single people are been brainwashed with words – “get married, get happier and healthier”.
Closely looking at the vast literature available today about single vs married people, it doesn’t validate this age prevailing idea of “happily married”. According to National Statistics Domestic Violence (NCADV), in a year, more than 10 million women and men are physically abused by an intimate partner in the United States.
Social media and movies like “Fifty Shades of Grey” or “Suicide Squad” glorify toxic relationships as true love. Such relationships are far from perfect, but netigens get a wrong idea of what a healthy, meaningful relationship or marriage looks like.
No wonder why there is an increase in divorce rates and decrease in marriage rates in different parts of the world.These stats also validate why is being single better than bad relationship.
Now it’s time to ponder:
- Aren’t these so-called, well-established married people (with or without toxic partners) craving for their single life again?
- Why is there a growing number of people coming back to the point where they were when they were single?
- Why sayings like “being single better than bad relationship” or “being single is better than being married” are trending on social media?
It means all this long what we believed to be true about marriage and happy endings is actually False.
Being single beats being married
I hope that the above discussion clears why is being single better than being married. But, I don’t mean to say that everyone must stay single forever and never get married! I am myself a single woman and never got married. I want you to know that satisfaction or happiness doesn’t come only from romantic relationships. I believe that the key to healthy, happy and long life is to have genuine attachment relationships and a bulk of literature validates the same.
Professor DePaulo also said that with increasing research in this field, scholars are also learning the “ risks of putting too much relationship capital into The One, and the psychological benefits of investing in The Ones.”
It can’t be said with a guarantee that one relationship status is better than the other. Everyone is unique and there is no blueprint for a good life. In Professor DePaulo’s words, one must pursue what is best for them be it place, spouse, relationships, or people who are compatible with who you really are and allow you to live your best lives.
No I would like to ask you – Is being single better than being married? What do you think? Leave a comment below!