Back to basics after wedding fever cools
Most newlyweds experience a brief emotional bounce after their wedding, but they eventually return to the same outlook they had on life before they tied the knot, according to a new study. “We found that people were no more satisfied after marriage than they were prior to marriage,” the researchers said.
The study, published in the March issue of the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, tracked more than 24,000 people from 1984 to 1995, asking participants every year to rate their overall life satisfaction from zero (totally unhappy) to 10 (totally happy).
The average boost from marriage was small — one-tenth of one point on the scale, researchers said. The study, which took 15 years to complete, also found that people who were already satisfied with their lives before marriage were more likely to stay married longer.
Dorian Solot, co-founder of the Alternatives to Marriage Project, said the study showed marriage was not a cure-all. “I think it reminds us that there’s no magic ticket to happiness. Wedding bells might do it for some people, but true happiness is about you and your own life, not your marital status,” said Solot, who also co-wrote “Unmarried to Each Other.” —Ananova