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Are Married People Really Happier Than Singles


By with 60 comments
a pic of married people holding hands with rose bouquet

Are married people truly happier than the unmarried ones? Now, this is a tricky one, isn’t it? Some of the married and unmarried ones might refute this statement. Equally possible is that they both would in fact agree to this debatable hypothesis.

Well, at least for me this is no hypothesis or assumption, as I’m firm on my answer to the question.

If you remember, not long ago I’d written a post on how you can find happiness in a marriage. If I know there are ways to create unlimited happiness opportunities for married people, how can I not agree?

I truly believe that married people are happier than singles. Now it’s for you to read the post and decide for yourself.

For a befitting start-up to the interesting discussion, I have a couple of proven scientific facts to back my choice.

On average, married people show higher levels of health and wealth. And, they also have lower mortality levels as compared to the single people.

So, the married people already seem to have the edge. Anyways, let’s be unbiased, look at the larger picture and try to analyze the two different marital states.

“The trouble with many married people is that they are trying to get more out of marriage than there is in it.” ~ Elbert Hubbard

Surveys and Studies On Married People

Even surveys show that married people are happier attached, than the unmarried unattached lots. For most people happiness is measured by a number of factors.

These include financial condition, job security, health prospects, social life, education, sexual pleasure, and of course family. And studies show that married people always come out on top in most of these areas of happiness.

Researchers have found that married people get a boost in their lives and immense satisfaction from marriage.

The boost in happiness may be very little due to the initial reactions to marriage. However, afterwards the married couples return to their earlier levels of happiness.

Do you think I’m only going to boast and brag of married people? No, they aren’t the perfect god creatures either, and have their own set of flaws.

As per a new study, married individuals aren’t happier than when they were single. But with time and everything considered, married people are happier than those who are unmarried.

Marriage of course isn’t all bliss. In fact another study indicated that if your spouse bothers you, your marriage will like get worse over time. So, all of you married lots – better keep your spouse happy!

“A great marriage is not when the ‘perfect couple’ comes together. It is when an imperfect couple learns to enjoy their differences.” ~ Dave Meurer

Health & Happiness in Married Individuals

Married people are less likely to be limited in activities, which includes work or other activities of daily living. However, they are more likely to be overweight or obese than others.

1- Better Health

A survey conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics, found that married people reported better overall health. As compared to singles they had:

  • Less low back pain.
  • Fewer headaches.
  • Less anxiety and stress.
  • Lower level of depression
  • Less likelihood to drink and smoke.
  • More physically active life.
  • Longer life expectancy – that’s ten years longer than for those who stay single.

Health studies show that having a spouse reduces your chance of dying from diseases like cancer, heart diseases, or other ailments within ten years of diagnosis.

2- Better Support

Studies also show that married men have lower blood pressure that’s linked to support from a spouse. They are promoted at work more often, and have advantages in terms of money.

Happily married women have lower cholesterol levels and are typically thinner. But those who are less happy suffer the negative effects.

Hold on, here’s something to pep up all the singles who’re bored finding the married people as favorites in this article.

Single women do fare better than their married counterparts, however, conditions apply!

Studies revealed that single women with busy careers and strong social networks were happy. That’s because they are fulfilling their own personal needs.

Some studies also indicate that women are happier single, though some others say they aren’t, just as it’s mentioned here.

“The world has grown suspicious of anything that looks like a happily married life. ~ Oscar Wilde

Married People Vs Single People

Single people may feel that they have the advantage of being free and unattached. However, it turns out that married people may benefit more physically, mentally, and spiritually.

The general perception is that marriage is stressful and even chaotic sometimes. Even though the fact is that marriage is hard work, it still is worthwhile. It has been observed that being married brings about a lot of happiness to a person.

Some of you might prefer to stay single rather than get married. Yes, you have your share of fun, freedom, and carefree attitude.

While for married people, it does tie them down to a life that is full of responsibilities and commitments. But married people also have a family and kid’s they can call their own, and whom they look up for love and support.

Married people have a sense of purpose and marriage provides them a security in their lives.

Most married lots are motivated to work because they have a purpose to provide for their family and give them the best in life.

When married people have roles like that of a parent and spouse to play, it increases their self-esteem and self-worth.

It makes them feel complete and they lead fulfilling lives, which results in true happiness.

But if you are trapped in a bad marriage, then there is no question of happiness.

“A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person.” ~ Mignon McLaughlin

In some countries cohabitation is still favored, while in others marriage is more of a social obligation that most of us have to follow.

If you are single, then surround yourself with family and supportive friends, and pamper yourself. Whether you are married or single, you need to fight and achieve your own share of happiness.

Don’t wait for others to make you happy, take your happiness into your own hands and just – be happy!

I’m sure you would love taking this quiz that tells you whether married people are really happier as compared to the unmarried lot.

Finally, I feel that marriage is wonderful. Yes, it has its ups and downs, but that any relationship has.

“I love being married. It’s so great to find that one special person you want to annoy for the rest of your life.” ~ Rita Rudner

You don’t find happiness in a marriage unless you work on it. Happiness in a marriage takes a lot of time, patience, and constant nurturing.

Married people grow and mature with time, have their differences, face stressful situation, and have their good times too. But they learn to bear and do things together, and land up happier in the long run.

So, for all of you who are single and thinking of getting married – go right ahead and get married!

“Love seems the swiftest, but it is the slowest of all growths. No man or woman really knows what perfect love is until they have been married a quarter of a century.” ~ Mark Twain

Over to you

Do you feel married people are happier than singles? If you are/were married, are/were you happier married than single? Share your views below.

 


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About Harleena Singh

Harleena Singh is a positive thinker and a freelance writer. She loves to write inspiring and thought provoking posts on self-improvement, family, relationships, health, and other aspects of life. She's not another personal development guru, but just an average person with great life experiences. She's also a blogger, who loves to share her blogging knowledge and experiences. Network with her on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+..

60 Comments

  1. Mayura

    November 9, 2012 at 9:18 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    Well, here I don’t have much to say and I don’t like to compare without going through marriage dear ;).

    The quiz is really cool Harleena. I just had the quiz and I was wrong about some things according to their facts :). I mean, such as happiness of widows, happiness in second marriage and so on. My attitude towards marriage is positive :).

    Well, for me marriage is more than what it is :). Who would not love to be with loved ones. I never felt it will be stressful. Totally opposite. Anyway I don’t like cohabitation. Glad my traditions encourage not to :).

    And I feel marriage will add more freedom to me, in my point of view. It’s subjective though. As a single, yet I don’t feel I’m unhappy. I’m happy with what I have though I have more expectations. They will be fulfilled after marriage :).

    lol… Though I said I have not much to say, I did write more than I thought :D.

    Cheers…

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 12, 2012 at 1:26 pm

      I can understand that Mayura!

      But I would love to hear your views about this post once you do get married – would be interesting to hear it from a person who has been single and then got married. :)

      I went wrong in the quiz too in some places, even though I am married, so don’t worry! I think it only makes us more aware about certain facts we didn’t know earlier, and it sure is a learning experience for married people and singles like you too – isn’t it? Good to know that you are positive towards marriage, and am sure looking forward to it too, and yes, I too am not much in favor of cohabitation, though some people do prefer it.

      Ah…I can’t really say about freedom as that would depend on you and your partner, and how both of you handle your marriage. But I guess you mentioned freedom right now because you are living with your parents and after marriage you would be living on your own. I am sure all your expectations would be fulfilled, though a word of advice – don’t have too many expectations too. :)

      Thanks for stopping by and contributing to the post. :)

      BTW – Sorry for the late reply to you and everyone else too. It’s just that my Dad is around for a few days to be with us, and we also have our festival season going on, so you can well imagine. :)

  2. Claire Wagner

    November 9, 2012 at 9:50 pm

    Harleena,

    I think this is my favorite part: “You don’t find happiness in a marriage unless you work on it. Happiness in a marriage takes a lot of time, patience, and constant nurturing.” I’ve been married 28 years and I totally agree. The work springs from commitment and love, of course. I also always say that one key to a good marriage – because there are many – is to marry someone who you admire.

    I’ve emailed this to my husband to see what he thinks! Thanks as always for an inspiring post.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 12, 2012 at 1:34 pm

      Glad you could relate to the post Claire!

      Yes indeed, marriage DOES take a lot of working on both sides, and finding happiness within a marriage isn’t easy either. It does require lot of time, patience, and nurturing. I guess being married for 28 years, we sure have an expert right here with us. :)

      I agree about marrying someone whom you look up to and admire, though I hope and pray that they always remain as they are when we first married them – isn’t it? I guess the love is what’s needed, along with deep understanding and commitment to make a marriage work. I also wonder what your husband must have thought after going through the post!

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your wisdom with all of us. :)

  3. Debbie

    November 9, 2012 at 10:23 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    I believe that married people are happier. I like this,”Married people have a sense of purpose and marriage provides them a security in their lives.”

    Yes, marriage is something that we have to work at like keeping the weeds out of our flower gardens. Every once in a while we have to dig deep to get all the bindweed out.

    Life is about sharing our life with others and when we have a partner to share the day to day stuff with like troubles, laughter, love and family we move forward. Like you say,we have a sense of purpose. And to truly be happy and find happiness we need a sense of purpose.

    Love is what makes life worth living and when we share the deeps love as humans with that one special person it is like making life complete.

    No I don’t believe marriage is for everyone, but when we do share our life completely with that one special person it brings us greater happiness. We grow as a person much easier.

    Debbie

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 12, 2012 at 1:56 pm

      Glad you agree Debbie!

      Married people do have a purpose and they are committed to each other, which gives them security and bring happiness in their married life. However, there are certain people who might go the other way if they don’t find happiness in their marriage, or if they really don’t work on their marriage – just like we need to work on our garden. Those weed have to be removed and we need to keep nurturing the garden for it to fully bloom and flourish.

      You are absolutely right about sharing and caring things with our partner, and that’s how we move ahead in our lives. I think it makes our life’s journey more worthwhile. Just the fact to have someone to share your worries, troubles, joys, sorrows, and to laugh and enjoy life with your loved ones around you is bliss. :)

      But yes, I’ve some friends and family members who are loving it being single, and feel that they have all that they need to keep them happy. Or there are some who have divorced and separated and feel they are much happier now. I guess it depends a lot on their outlook of life and their own personal experiences – isn’t it?

      I agree that marriage isn’t for everyone because it does require a lot of understanding, acceptance, and sacrifice that few are able to do. Or even if one side does, the other might not really be as involved or giving as the other and that’s where the problems start.

      Thanks for sharing your pearls of wisdom with all of us. :)

  4. Cathy Taughinbaugh

    November 10, 2012 at 4:17 am

    Hi Harleena,

    I’m married and feel that I am happier married than single, but I do know that I could live on my own. I think it can also depend on your personality. If you are outgoing and easily connect with people, being single could be fun.

    As you pointed out if you are in an unhappy marriage, being single would also be much better. It is important to know that you can be single and find happiness by yourself, rather than rushing to get married because your feel the other person will make you happy.

    There are many more single people these days and the young people are waiting longer to get married, which is a good thing. Hopefully they will be more mature and there will be less divorce.

    Great topic and post – thank you!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 12, 2012 at 2:12 pm

      Glad you could resonate with the post Cathy!

      Yes indeed – a lot depends on your personality and how you take life. There are some people who need a security in their marriage, and that’s one of that factors that brings them happiness. While there are others who really aren’t dependent on marriage to be happy, and they would be happy under any circumstances because that’s how they are, which I feel is what we all need to be.

      I’ve also known people who are extroverts and great connectors, though they need someone to come back home to – they want to have their loved ones around them and often feel depressed and lonely at such times. I guess a lot depends on what brings them happiness and how they take their life.

      If married people are unhappy in their marriage, then moving their separate ways is the best solution for them – if they have tried everything and nothing really works for them. I guess they need to move away from each other to bring back the happiness in their lives. I loved the point you raised about rushing into a marriage or depending on another person to bring you happiness, which is quite true.

      I also feel that younger people should know each other very well before getting married, as it will bring more of an understanding between them. As you rightly mentioned, they would reach that maturity level with age and know if they are really compatible enough to get married or not.

      Thanks for stopping by and contributing to the post. :)

  5. Sylviane Nuccio

    November 10, 2012 at 8:12 am

    Well, that’s a very interesting question, isn’t it?

    In my case I was actually miserable when I was married because the marriage wasn’t a good one. On the other hand, I am much happier now that I am single again.

    However, no doubt that married couples benefit from a companionship and support that single people may not have. Before I actually got married I thought that single life was awful and I just hated it. Today, however, my thoughts on that have made a 180 degree change. Now I think that being single means freedom and I love it :) Also, when I think about happy marriages I can only think of a small handful of couples I know. Most married people I know are not or were not the happiest to be sure.

    I’m not saying that I won’t get married again, but I am certainly not desperate to do so as I used to be. As a matter of fact, I don’t really care if I do or if I don’t at this point. So, that frees me from the type of anxieties that I used to have in the past before I got married.

    In the end I think that being happy is an inside job and whether married or single, what really makes you happy, it’s YOU, and not marriage or lack thereof can actually make you happy if you’re not. That I have experienced myself.

    Thank you for this post :)

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 12, 2012 at 10:48 pm

      Glad you could resonate with the post Sylviane!

      Yes, it is a tricky and controversial question, and I feared I’d have contrasting responses. The answer is very subjective, and depends from person to person and situations to circumstances.

      In a bad marriage people are never happy, and being single after that phase is definitely better than being married. You narrate the actual facts one faces and feels when single and when married. It is truly sad, as per what you’ve observed, that most people are not able to be happy in their marriage. When you’re single, you do fancy how the married life would be, and if it does not turn out to be good, you desire to be single again. I agree that the person himself or herself is responsible for one’s happiness, but here we were comparing the two marital states of being married and unmarried, and we found that those singles are much happier who’ve dissolved their marriage.

      Thank you for your contribution. :)

  6. Jane

    November 10, 2012 at 9:15 am

    Good one Harleena.

    With marriage, “commitment” comes as an addition and this leads to stronger expectations by both the partners. That is the main reason why people end up expecting too much from their partners and eventually end up disappointed.

    From my personal experience, things are bit turbulent for a few months immediately after marriage; takes quite a while for the both parties to adjust and adapt and then things go very smooth (at least for me).

    If you ask me this question: I’d say my married life is much more happier than my single life and with lots of beautiful experiences and enhancements to my personal self that have made me mature!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 12, 2012 at 10:52 pm

      Welcome to the blog Jane – nice to have you over!

      Your perception is based on your personal experiences, which certainly decides which marital state brings more happiness. It’s true that every relationship has an initial settling and trying period, and those who are able to sail their marriage across the turbulent waters, experience the smooth bliss in marriage like you do. But, again, this cannot be generalized.

      Your experience tells us that married individuals in a happy marriage are more happier than the single people, who either were never married or became single after an unsuccessful marriage. I guess a lot depends from one person to another – isn’t it?

      Thank you for contributing and adding value to the post.:)

  7. Corinne Rodrigues

    November 10, 2012 at 6:40 pm

    I guess this would depend on how happy one is one’s marriage and whether you went into it with your eyes open. I know people who are miserable in their marriages, but I’m pretty certain they’d be miserable single too. Like you said, it’s all about finding happiness with ourselves. When we do that as singles the chances of us having a happy marriage are higher I believe.

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      Harleena Singh

      November 12, 2012 at 10:56 pm

      Absolutely Corinne!

      Whether married people are really happy than singles depends on the individual’s nature and the pattern of general tendency to react to problems in life. If we’re happy with ourselves irrespective of the type of situation one faces or have a habit of being optimistic and reacting positively to problems, we end up being happy, either being single or married.

      I guess you mean to say that being married or not is not the question, as it’s all about the individual and other situations like marriage come secondary, right?

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

      • Corinne Rodrigues

        November 13, 2012 at 11:39 am

        Yes, Harleena.

        While I’m not disputing this research, I’m talking from my personal experience. It so happened that I took responsibility for my happiness as a single person and then got married and am married happily.

        Pardon me for sharing this link but I think it explains what I mean better

        • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

          Harleena Singh

          November 24, 2012 at 8:36 pm

          Thanks for sharing the link, and yes, I agree that our personal experiences might differ because each one of us is different. We cannot really rely on the researches. :)

          Thanks :)

  8. Adrienne

    November 10, 2012 at 10:40 pm

    I’m sorry Harleena but I find that a little hard to believe. Surveys! Seriously!

    The things you listed as far as the health goes that married people seem to do better at is something I find really a little absurd myself. Your health issues don’t necessarily have anything to do with whether you’re married or not. I can definitely vouch for that from the people I know that are happily married yet have horrible health problems.

    As Sylviane stated, we both are very happy not being married and although I am well aware that we just did not chose the right partners I’m not putting marriage down at all. It’s just not for some people and I happen to be one of those.

    I honestly believe it has to do with the individuals so I think that the “studies” just happen to be based on the number of people they spoke with. Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate the fact that you are bringing this to our attention but having been single the majority of my life I can definitely vouch for all those marriages I’ve watched go bad, all my friends who have been unhappy and all these marriages I’m aware of personally where the couples are just existing.

    Marriage can be a wonderful union when you find the right person. Others stay together for the kids or for some of the friends I know, financial reasons. It’s really quite sad when you think about it and I admit I’m not the best person to be commenting on this subject so please forgive me if I seem rather harsh regarding some of this. I just have very strong opinions where this is concerned that’s all.

    ~Adrienne

    • Annie Andre

      November 12, 2012 at 8:34 pm

      I’m with Sylviane and Adrienne,

      These surveys sound a little self serving in that, have they polled people in bad relationships or did they only poll people who were willing and therefore in happy relationships?

      I was in a horrible marriage that gave me ulcers, put me in the hospital, stressed me out and made me drop down from 13 pounds to 90 pounds. After my divorce, my condition improved even my mental state improved.
      Perhaps, what i might believe is that A good relationship can improve your health. But not a general blanket statement that being married will make you healthier and happier..

      • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

        Harleena Singh

        November 12, 2012 at 11:38 pm

        Glad you could relate to the post Annie!

        Yes, sometimes we really can’t rely on these surveys and studies as they are based region wise or based on a particular group of people, which might or might not relate to us. However, that was one of the reasons I wanted to bring this to the notice of people and ask their views about it.

        You are a living proof to prove the health studies wrong it seems after having undergone so much, because you were not in a happy marriage earlier and it have an affect on your health. I am glad you moved out and found your share of happiness. Yes indeed, a happy marriage is what keeps you healthy, though as you rightly mentioned, it’s not necessary that marriage as such can make you happy and healthy.

        Thanks for stopping by and contributing to the post. :)

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 12, 2012 at 11:29 pm

      I can well understand your view point Adrienne!

      Sometimes surveys aren’t really what they might show and are based on results that vary from region to region or different sets of people who might or might not be undergoing, or have undergone what we might have gone through, so one can’t really rely on them entirely. And yes, in some cases people even exist in a marriage thought they remain unhappy all through their lives, but they exist for the sake of their own security or for the sake of their kids. However, most of the studies showed similar results, which I found rather interesting and thought to raise this question, even though I knew it would have various view points to it. :)

      The health issues again as per the health studies indicated that marriage makes people healthier and happier, though I agree with you and even Annie that if you aren’t in a good or happy marriage, it can surely have an adverse affect on you and entirely bring you down. While just as you mentioned, there are certain people who are happily married – yet they have health issues, so it all really depends from one person to another and how they take their lives.

      I agree with you and Sylviane that sometimes when the right choice of partners isn’t there, it does result in a bad marriage and in such cases, it’s best to move away and find your own share of happiness, which I am so glad both of you eventually did.

      I know it’s not much of a subject you would like to comment on, and I thank you that you still did leave your wonderful comment based on your experience, which is all true and not at all harsh. I just hope and pray that you always remain content and happy as you are. :)

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with all of us. :)

  9. Hajra

    November 11, 2012 at 12:07 am

    A very interesting article.

    I never thought of it this way. My parents keep telling me that marriage brings joys of a much different level and the experience itself is blissful.

    I feel I have to go through the experience to have a say on this. But I feel one needs to find happiness and appreciate moments of happiness – single or married!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 12, 2012 at 11:01 pm

      Glad you could relate to the post Hajra!

      I agree with your parents, but then marriage comes with no guarantees. But you’re right that it is very difficult to comment on this question unless and until you’ve been through and experienced the married life. In that too, one’s with bitter experiences and otherwise, both would’ve different opinions and conclusions.

      It’s true that appreciating moments of happiness brews up the potion of happiness, but here I was looking for honest answer from those who’ve had experiences of both the worlds. I do appreciate your honesty and contribution.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  10. Brenda

    November 11, 2012 at 4:04 am

    I don’t know if I would say one is happier than the other. For me, I was very happy in my single life. However, that was a different time in my life. I wanted different things as a “single” person. When I got married, and still am btw, I am happy too. My life is different now and I want different things now than I did as a single person. So for myself, I was/am equally happy. Either way, life was good. :)

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 12, 2012 at 11:02 pm

      Glad you could resonate with the post Brenda!

      You’re very honest, and I think very correct too. Both states – single and married, are equally good and happy. It’s really the situations, circumstances, experiences and attitudes that change the hues of happiness, which could sway to either side, making one feel more happier in one state than the other.

      Thanks for sharing your personal viewpoint and adding value to the post.:)

  11. Ahsan

    November 11, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    Marriage makes us more social, and helps to improve bonding life. The life of single & married life is far far different. But after marriage life seems more happier than ever.

    Anyway, great share :)

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 12, 2012 at 11:04 pm

      Glad you could relate to the post Ahsan!

      Marriage definitely is progressive and teaches us a lot about interpersonal communication and advanced calibration of relationships. There are some aspects of life which you encounter only after getting married. Single and married life both have their unique experiences and benefits, but if one is successful in marriage, then there are no two thoughts that married people are much happier.

      Thanks for stopping by.:)

  12. JanBierens

    November 11, 2012 at 11:22 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    I have to second Adrienne on this one. Surveys about these – or most other subjects – can not be taken serious. The singles are complaining they are lonely and couples complain about the fact they feel crowded in a relationship.

    I would think that there is no *better* way, and people are seeking for happiness for themselves. And it should be that way, because I don’t feel it’s a good thing to have a relationship with someone just to make the other one happy. If you are in a relationship with someone and both you and ‘the other’ feel happy, you are a complete couple.

    Did you notice the fact I didn’t use the word ‘marriage’ until just now? I know the ‘form’ you can be with someone else differs from country to country and religion can play a big role too, but where I come from (The Netherlands) almost all forms are allowed. And thinking about that makes another question pop up. “Do people in a relationship got to have confirmation (by law or church)” I believe that makes no difference. If you truly love someone there’s nothing that can stop you.

    A very interesting post, Harleena!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 13, 2012 at 1:07 am

      Glad you could relate to the post Jan!

      Yes indeed, just as I mentioned to Adrienne and Annie too, we really can’t take all kind of surveys and polls all that seriously, though most of them said the same thing. I guess a lot depends on the region where these surveys are conducted and the kind of people whom they take up for the surveys too.

      Ah…complains will always be there, and just as someone here had commented that the grass is always greener on the other side holds good here too. Married people will more than half the time vouch for being happier when they were single, while the unmarried singles might want to get married to find their share of happiness, though I feel when both these groups find what they are looking for they just might change their views!

      Absolutely! We never really should depend on others for being happy, and each one of us have to find our own happiness ourselves. However, some people are dependent on people or things to make them happy, or they tend to relate their happiness to those who they are related to, which in turn makes them unhappy if their wishes aren’t fulfilled. Sometimes we might be happy in a marriage, but our partner might not be, so are we really responsible for their share of happiness – I guess not. Yes, all we can really do is try and make our partner happy in whatever best way we can, other than that each one of us has to seek our own level of happiness – isn’t it?

      I did notice that Jan, though any kind of ‘form’ can be followed by anyone if they so feel like it, and we have many such cases in our country too. However, I do believe in marriage and feel it’s better than cohabitation or just having a relationship and living together. And yes, perhaps that’s what we’ve been taught our end and have seen our generations do the same, so one can’t really talk about everyone else and their cultures, but just what best we know. Yes, if you love someone, nothing can stop you, but in some cultures just living together isn’t counted as good enough as marriage, which gives makes it legal enough.

      Thanks for stopping by and adding more value to the post. :)

  13. Lisa

    November 12, 2012 at 1:31 am

    Sometimes I think the grass is always greener on the other side. I’ve read the studies too and I am on my second marriage and have seen many divorces all around me. I think it’s more of an individual thing if a person is happy or not. I have had both married and single friends who are just as happy as the other. I don’t think I was less happy single in between my marriages either. I think it’s important if in a marriage the individuals can enrich one another. It really is a lot of work and that sometimes can lead to frustrations. Interesting post indeed!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 12, 2012 at 11:06 pm

      Glad you could resonate with the post Lisa!

      It comes to the individual when we talk of happiness in being single or married – and I agree with you. You’re right in your observation that the grass is always greener on the other side; singles think that married are happier, and married feel that singles are better off. This is more if things at their ends of lives are not what they expect or like to be.

      You were unhappy in a bad marriage, but happy in a good marriage, and no less after being single again – so your life experience demonstrates that there isn’t any generalized rule that can tell if the married or the single would be more happy.

      Thank you for sharing your life experiences and adding value to the post.:)

  14. Vinod Kumar

    November 12, 2012 at 9:12 am

    Hi Harleena,

    A marriage for right reasons is always better than that of a marriage just for namesake. A marriage needs lot of love, care, understanding, commitment, and maturity and the lack of these can lead to strain in the married life. If one lacks these there is no point in getting married and bring sorrow to the spouse. In that way staying single is much better than getting married. I feel cohabiting can destroy the sole purpose of marriage.

    I am single but have seen the lives of married and singles and feel being married with the right person is much better than staying single or cohabiting. Anyways it is a nice topic. Thank you very much for writing on this topic. ;) :)

    Regards,

    Vinod Kumar

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 12, 2012 at 11:08 pm

      Welcome to the blog Vinod!

      You’re quite right there with your observations and remarks about marriage. Of course, marriage is no easy going relationship – it needs perfect teamwork to move forward and experience the bliss. The success of marriage does require many skills, abilities, and qualities. And, I agree that any deficiency in these aspects could jeopardize the happiness in a marriage, which renders singles as more happier than the married people.

      I appreciate your honesty and assessment that in spite of being single, you advocate that married people who are married to the right person are more happier than the singles.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  15. Barry Wells

    November 12, 2012 at 11:01 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    Well this post seems to have stirred the pot a little :)

    Having been married for 23 years I can say that I’m extremely happy with married life. It hasn’t always been that way though, we’ve had our ups and downs along the way and had some really un-happy times. We’ve managed to work through them, which has lead to us being happier than ever before.

    None of us are the same though and I know people that are far more happy being single than they ever were married.

    Whilst on the other hand I know people that have been single for a very long time and they’d love to find someone to settle down with.

    Lisa made a good point about the grass being greener on the other side. When people are unhappy (single or married) they often think the grass is greener on the other side, only to get there and wish they hadn’t.

    I know some that have been married, broke up and are then desperate to get married again, maybe that’s for the security or just to have someone at home after a day’s work. Whilst on the flip side some have split up and think they never want to do that again.

    Personally I think it’s about who we’re married to and how compatible and understanding we are with each other. My wife is my rock and has been through so much with me that she deserves a medal (in fact i bought her one for our 5th wedding anniversary). I don’t think being married has anything to do with our health in general but will say that I think I’m healthier with my wife’s help than I would have been without it.

    I didn’t score to well with the quiz either Harleena but at least I tried ha ha

    Take care,
    Barry

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      Harleena Singh

      November 13, 2012 at 1:26 am

      It sure stirred it up well enough Barry!

      Glad you are as happy as I am, though like you, we also have ups and downs, but that brings us all the more closer when things get alright. I guess that might be the case with most marriages, which is what makes our lives more worthwhile.

      Yes indeed, we have a few friends among us who have gone through a lot and have found their happiness now, after ending their marriages that really didn’t work for them, due to whatever reasons. While there are other singles who have got married because they feel that’s what would bring them happiness. Or there are those who have split up and are wanting to re-marry for security reasons or because they miss a family life. So there are all kinds of people that are living examples of the fact – isn’t it?

      The grass is always greener on the other side, and very few of us are really happy with the lives we lead, unless we make an effort to be happy. You are absolutely right about how much of understanding, love, and compatibility really exists between two married people that makes a major difference in a marriage. That’s so sweet of you to give a medal to your wife, and I think you must have floored her on your anniversary years back. ( I need to make my hubby read this and get some clues!) Just the fact that you are healthy and well, and the fact that you are both together proves that you are happy in your marriage. I hope and pray that always remains for many years to come. :)

      I guess trying out the quiz mattered more than scoring well in it because it does teach us a great deal in some ways.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences and wisdom with all of us. :)

  16. Jeevan Jacob John

    November 13, 2012 at 5:13 am

    There are two problems with this topic/question (well, maybe more that I don’t realize) – One, it depends a lot. Situations are different for each person, so it is really hard to make a good generalization of something as big as the institution of marriage. Second, how can we measure happiness? (Lot of debate going on in this arena. Is happiness about wealth? Job? or whatever? Or much more than that? Surveys – I don’t know, they may not be true at all, because in surveys we write what we want to write – not what really happens in our life (of course, there are circumstances in which those changes).

    Back to your question, I actually don’t know :D

    I believe that anyone can be happy (whether they are married or not) – just learn to control our emotions, be happy with what we have and at the same time, strive for more – help others and try to find happiness in helping others!

    Anyways, interesting question, Harleena!

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      Harleena Singh

      November 24, 2012 at 3:17 pm

      Glad you could resonate to the post Jeevan!

      Firstly, my apologize for the late reply and the reason being that my Dad was visiting us for a few days, so for me, that was priority. :)

      I agree that a lot depends on the situation of married people and singles, and what their level of happiness really is. And yes, how do you measure happiness because for each one it might be a different point they relate to. Speaking of which, the question put across here mainly asks whether it’s the married lots who are happier or the unmarried ones, which according to surveys points towards the married lots. Most surveys are based on a particular group of people or to a particular region, so they might or might not work for us, though I won’t say they aren’t authentic in most cases.

      However, I agree that we really can’t depend only on surveys and a lot is based on our personal experiences and what really makes us happy – isn’t it? I guess I should be asking you this question once you are married, because then you would be able to compare your present life and the one married people lead. :)

      Absolutely! Anyone can be happy if they want to be – as happiness is a state of our mind that we can control anytime we want. I guess finding your own share of happiness is what life’s all about.

      Thanks for stopping by and contributing to the post. :)

  17. Galen Pearl

    November 13, 2012 at 8:39 am

    Having spent some of my life married and some of it not married, I have to say for me that marriage was not part of my path in this lifetime. Once I really understood the deeper significance of that, I began to thrive, and I know I am much happier on my own. My neighbors, on the other hand, have been so happily married for so many years, that they should be the poster couple for happy marriage. I guess it’s personal and difficult to generalize.

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      Harleena Singh

      November 24, 2012 at 3:22 pm

      Absolutely Galen!

      We can’t really generalize such things because each of our experiences are different from what others might go through. In your case too, you’ve seen both sides of the coin and would be the best judge, but that again is based on your own personal experiences and not what surveys indicate, which are based on a particular group of people – isn’t it? I am glad though that you managed to find your share of happiness whichever way that might be. :)

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  18. Mary Stephenson

    November 14, 2012 at 8:20 am

    Hi Harleena

    Hmm…didn’t know if I should give an opinion or not. Been married for 46 years. It has been good and it has been not so good. It has been to the point I wanted to run away. It has been up and down with finances. With high expectations and extreme disappointments. Yet we are still together. There has been times I wondered why I even got married and other times has been bliss. But when all is said and done there are things that keep me here.

    We like a lot of the same things. He is here for me and I can count on him when I need a shoulder to lean on. Who else would hold me and comfort me when I am sick and throwing up in the middle of the night (hasn’t happened in along time). But I know he will be there when no one else will.

    Then there is someone to do things with and helps me when I need it.

    I think the problem is not so much marriage or single as it is defining and being who you really want to be. Sometimes marriage stifles this and you end up doing what someone else wants to do and you loose yourself if they just happen to be the stronger minded. If knowing what I know now back then, I would have gone on the path I had planned first, even if it took me back to the same person later on. It is one regret I have. I really needed to become a stronger person first.

    Mary

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      Harleena Singh

      November 24, 2012 at 7:43 pm

      Glad you could resonate with the post Mary!

      Wow! 46 years is a great score I must say! Yes, marriage has it’s ups and downs, the good and bad moments, and the happy and sad ones. With it comes disappointments, expectations, but also the love and togetherness, which is why we are still married and holding on – isn’t it?

      I agree that even though we have our problem areas, we are together and one because we have each other as partners and I know that he will always be by my side no matter what. Just that though and feelings gives an inner happiness and security. And yes, because we are married there is always help and support whenever needed, from him to me and vice-versa.

      You are right about being a stronger person first and having your own identity by standing for yourself before venturing into marriage, but then too there are no guarantees whether such a marriage will also work or not. I guess we all need to take our chances and learn to make adjustments when we get married, and learn to make the best with what we have to be really happy.

      Thanks for stopping by and adding more value to the post. :)

  19. Manickam Vijayabanu

    November 14, 2012 at 9:34 am

    Marriage means commitment.

    Its a key runner, and how comfortably and confidently you love the linkage makes your married life become more successful. People when get married, their focus, needs, desire, goals and commitments may widely get changed or can pave a path to get changed, while compared to their single life. The reason is simple. Being single, you run your life on your shoes. No compromise, no regrets and importantly managed commitment which has created by YOU.

    I would like to compare single & married life as similar as 100mts running and tennis. At 100mts, reaching the target is your only goal. So, just practice. But, married life is like playing tennis. Ball can bounce at any direction and corner, and you should able to balance and practice well to compete with your partner for success. Both are games but the tracks are different. Here, I index the success is about happy married life.

    From my personal view one should get married. Being said, anyone can live as single and surely possible also. The prime reason could be about your career, education, financial background, circumstance or anything. But, humans hold a special and natural property. Emotional relationship. We all have stages in life. Being a single, one miss the opportunity of this emotional bond and relationship which is also a cardinal part of human life. You should enjoy the life stream with harmony and love.

    Happy married life won’t happen just any single day. Marriage is kind of a small seed or tiny plant. You have to grow to become a tree. You have to maintain your relationship constantly and feed the nutrients in the form of love, care, patience, laughter, share and so on at every stage. Surely it will grow.

    Another crucial element for successful marriage would be, the way you are brought up. Parents are role models for their kids and surely they have the social responsibility to teach their kids as what is the real meaning of life.

    Thanks for sharing the nice subject.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 24, 2012 at 8:12 pm

      Glad you could relate to the post Manickam!

      Yes indeed, marriage is a full time commitment and something that needs to be worked on all the time. Life totally changes for most of us who get married, and it’s totally different from the single life that we lead earlier. But I guess both sides have their pros and cons – isn’t it?

      Yes, when you are single, you are the sole boss of living the life the way you like, which is the major difference as compared to the life of married people. Because in a marriage you cannot just think about yourself and have another person whom you are living with to take care of and think about too, so you don’t really live ONLY for yourself. Ah…I liked the way you compared married life and the single one to running and tennis. :)

      I agree with you about getting married, and more than for anything else it’s for togetherness, the emotional relationship, and bonding that develops over time. The grass is always greener on the other side like they say, so unmarried people might feel that they want to get married because married people lead happier lives. Similarly, some married lots would want or prefer their single life back if they aren’t really happy in their marriage – isn’t it? So, a lot depends from person to person and what really makes them happy.

      Marriage needs to be worked upon, just like you care for a small seed till it becomes a plant. Even after that, you need to take care of the weed that tries to bring down the plant of marriage so that it continues to bloom and flourish into a full-fledged tree. You said the right thing, by adding the nutrients of love, care, understanding, and all that makes a marriage strong and healthy. There is no question then that you will not lead a happy married life.

      Absolutely! We learn most of our life’s lessons from our parents, and the way we see our parents and their relationship, somewhere or the other has an affect on us too, though a lot depends on the kind of partners we get too. Sometimes our bringing up is not the problem, instead, it’s the way the relationship with our partner turns out that sours things.

      Thanks for stopping by, and for your wonderful contribution to the post. :)

  20. Ruchira

    November 16, 2012 at 6:28 pm

    Interesting points Harleena but I so disagree to this statement :[Married people have a sense of purpose and marriage provides them a security in their lives.]

    Marriage for the sense of security is so very wrong! Marriage should be for love and companionship and not for security ! Singles have a sense of purpose too. Sense of purpose is not only towards making a good home/being a good husband/wife/parents. A sense of purpose can come from being committed to a social cause/being committed to your career or to even any other goal in life !!

    Also [When married people have roles like that of a parent and spouse to play, it increases their self-esteem and self-worth. It makes them feel complete and they lead fulfilling lives, which results in true happiness.] Sorry I don’t think roles of a parent or a spouse results in true happiness – True happiness as you yourself say comes from within and not from others even if they are your kids or spouse.

    Just my two cents !

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 24, 2012 at 8:32 pm

      That’s absolutely alright Ruchira!

      Marriage IS of course first for love and companionship, but it does provide a sense of security because you know you’re not alone in doing so many of life’s things. Agreed singles have a sense of purpose, but their sense of purpose is quite limited as compared to the married lots.

      I feel married people have more of a purpose (if we take their family only here) because they’ve to cater to their spouse, kid’s and other family members also, something that singles don’t have to see to – though both married and unmarried can be committed to various other things in common.

      Yes, true happiness comes from within yourself, and it’s only when you are happy can you make others happy, which is what’s required in a married and single life too. When you are a parent or a spouse, you feel you have a greater responsibility and this makes you feel worthy of looking after your souse and family. Happiness does come from within, but doesn’t the happiness of you spouse of child make you happy or their unhappiness make you unhappy? Somewhere down the line, we are affected if any one person in the family isn’t happy – I don’t think you can be happy in such a case, even though you work for being happy from within yourself.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts. :)

  21. Denise Gabbard

    December 18, 2012 at 4:16 am

    I think “happily married” people are much happier… and I think that being and staying, happily married is a lot of work. My husband and I have been together since 10th grade– the first years were off and on….but we kept coming back to each other and have been married for 32 years in January. For myself, I cannot imagine a life without him, he is the other half of my whole….and yes, we did build that over all these years. Happiness does come from within… but it is more fun when you have someone to share it with, and when someone always has your back…right or wrong.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      January 12, 2013 at 11:55 am

      Welcome to the blog Denise!

      Sorry for the late reply…I seem to have missed out on some comments though am glad am at it now. :)

      I agree with your there, and yes, staying happy in a marriage isn’t easy, and does require a lot of work and effort from both sides. Wow! Been together for so long and still going strong…that’s wonderful indeed. :)

      I can well imagine when you say that he is the other half of my whole….and I’m sure he too must be thinking the same about you. I guess having stayed with each other for so long, you begin to grow within each other. Thinking a life without one another seems impossible, because I’ve seen the same with my parents and have seen how my Dad is now after I lost my Mom a few years back.

      Yes indeed, happiness comes from within but life is so much more worthwhile when you have a partner to share it with. Couldn’t agree more with all that you said.

      Thanks for stopping by, and for sharing your words of wisdom with us. :)

  22. farouk

    January 9, 2013 at 3:15 pm

    interesting findings
    i think i should be getting married : )

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      January 12, 2013 at 11:57 am

      Glad you liked them Farouk!

      Yes indeed, you should get married and let us know if you are happier now or after your marriage. :)

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  23. Dhruv Bhagat

    January 11, 2013 at 7:17 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    Well, I have been in a relationship and both of the boy and girl should be serious for each other for the long term..

    If one cannot understand the other then there will be fights and in the end, both of them will broke up!!

    For those who are Single will say that being in a relationship is better and vice versa!!

    But its all depend upon you what you need..

    Everything has its own importance.. All you need is to be more responsible and mature in a relationship :)

  24. Profile photo of Harleena Singh

    Harleena Singh

    January 12, 2013 at 12:14 pm

    Welcome to the blog Dhruv!

    Yes indeed, you need to be very careful when you are in a relationship – whether you are married or single. Of course, being married I would say that married people are happier than single because we have someone all the time to share our life with. But yes, single people have all the freedom and their own reason for being happy as they are.

    There has to be deep commitment and understanding between both partners, and this holds true whether you are married or in a relationship being single too, or else it leads to heart-breaks.

    Thanks for stopping by. :)

  25. Michael Belk

    January 16, 2013 at 10:39 am

    Harleena, I have been down both roads marriage and now single. I think happiness can not be found in another person. I believe you are responsible for your own happiness.

    You can not blame anyone for your happiness. Being single I have found that I am happier alone right now.

    That may change later.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      January 16, 2013 at 11:17 am

      Absolutely Michael!

      We shouldn’t be dependent on another person for our happiness because it lies within us. However, because the post is about whether the married lots are happier than the single ones we need to focus on that aspect as somewhere along the line we hear of many cases where the married people feel they are happier, or the single ones feel they are better off.

      Nice to know that you have found your share of happiness being single as compared to the time when you were married. Yes, things can change anytime or perhaps if you found a good partner, you might fall into the category of married people who are happy. :)

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  26. Sareena

    January 23, 2013 at 2:47 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    I am big fan of yours and love the way you put the facts in your posts.
    As far as this post is concerned, I can relate it to well. I have been married for one and half years and I feel I am happier than before. Its my husband, Rafi, who taught me how to love unconditionally. For me life became more worthwhile only when I found a companion to share with and rely on.

    My husband stood for me always and help me grow as an individual.I cannot imagine a life without him:)

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      January 23, 2013 at 6:10 pm

      Hi Sareena,

      Welcome to the blog! Thanks for the appreciation. I’m glad you feel happier being married and that you and your husband have the understanding and the unconditional love to make it so.

      My best wishes for your happy married life. Thanks for stopping by. :)

  27. bheem

    February 4, 2013 at 11:10 am

    Marriage is a necessity more than a purpose. Hence all the civilizations have marriage as a custom since early days..Nice thoughts about marriage…

  28. David Landen

    February 8, 2013 at 9:23 am

    I have been married almost 20 years and wouldn’t change it for anything. Everyone is different and for some being married would turn them from happy to unhappy. I have friends that are single and very happy but for me being married is much more satisfying.

  29. sen kumar v

    February 8, 2013 at 2:08 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    First time reading your blog……Your mode of writing is commendable….Really great…….

  30. Ashutosh

    June 27, 2013 at 10:55 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    This post must be made to read by every single who consider themselves to be happier than married ones. A well thought out and beautifully expressed on all the important aspects that make a married people really happier than the singles.

    I think that the life is incomplete for single, howsoever they try to convince others but they too know the fact. Being single, I too thought that I was a happy single as compared to married people but after my marriage, I realised that it was a mirage. May be, singles don’t know the true meaning of happiness.

    Thanks for expressing such simple thoughts in a strong and effective way.

    Ashutosh Kasera

  31. Carl

    November 1, 2013 at 9:54 pm

    I’m guessing one of the reasons why singles are less happy is the constant goading by married friends and family to hurry up and join the ranks of the married. Married folks seem to use their single friends as sounding boards as well so frequently we hear only the negatives about marriage.

    I grow very tired of the “failure” monikers that get placed on singles. I recently explained to a married friend who asked when I was going to “settle down” that at 36 I have a decent job, own my own home and have a dog. Then I asked “what part of that is “unsettled?”

  32. Rachit Aggarwal

    November 15, 2013 at 7:20 pm

    I must say that I am completely agreed with you on this.

    If i compare myself with my friends who are single, I felt that i am motivated to work more and thus earn, i take care of health in a better way and more responsible in all respects. Marriage has given direction and routine to my life.

    The only this is that single can travel more frequently and can take more risks by changing his job frequently.

    I would also like to share 1 research which says that if either of husband/wife dies, the other one dies within 3 years in 90% of the cases due to loneliness. (Not able to recall the source of this study)

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