Thursday, July 7, 2011

On Parenting and Happiness

A recent study that polled over 200,000 people around the globe found that parents of young children are- wait for it- not quite as happy as parents of older children. Surprised? Well, say researchers, the answers may lie in the very simple, everyday tasks that stress out parents of very young children: diaper changes, night-time wakings, temper tantrums and the like. More still, young children use resources you may not be thinking of (or maybe you are) on a day to day basis: they take time away from you and your partner, your friends, and money out of your wallet. And even though parents love the snookers out of their little ones, it's a tough job, and one that may be affecting your happiness.

The bright side? As children age, the amount of care they require diminishes- and so does your stress. Result: happiness increases. As children reach young adulthood, parents may begin to see the fruits of their labor- college, career, wedding, and grandchildren. The study found that, by age 40, parents were happier than couples who didn't have children. 

What do you think? Sound off. Do you agree? Do you think it differs by culture? By gender of the child? By age at which you have a child? Tell me!


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