Happiness Myth: “I can’t be happy when I don’t have a partner.”

Sonja Lyubomirsky: “I can't be happy when I don't have a partner.”  So, we grow up in a culture that's very couple-oriented and so people who don't find partners or don't find partners for a long time feel deviant, they feel discriminated against, they're not invited to parties... and so it could cause a lot of unhappiness. 

I talk about the research that's actually been written a lot by Bella DePaulo, who's a researcher in this area, about how happy a lot of single people are. So, it turns out that there are many life-long singles; in fact, I believe half of the adults in the United States today are single. There are many life-long singles, especially women, who are very happy, who are no less happy than married or partnered peopled. They have – they tend to have a lot of friends, a dozen or more really deep friendships. I mean, can those of you who are married and have children, you know, can you say the same for yourself?  Do you have a dozen really deep friendships that with whom you, you know, keep in touch with on a very regular basis?

Single people tend to be very close to their family members, you know, nieces, nephews, siblings, parents. And their friends are their own.  You know, when you think about it when you're married and with children, a lot of your friends are not really chosen by you; they might be your partner's friends or they might be your kid's friends' parents, but when you're single you tend to choose your friends.

The bottom line is, I mean, what I like to highlight is that there are a lot single people who are very happy. And so if you have not found a partner or if you're not sure if you want to compromise or you want to live with someone else for the rest of your life, there's just a lot of hope for you out there from the science. 

Directed / Produced by Jonathan Fowler & Elizabeth Rodd

 

There are a lot single people who are very happy. Moreover, the scientific literature tells us that if you have not found a partner, there's a lot of hope for you and your well-being.

Car culture and suburban sprawl create rifts in society, claims study

New research links urban planning and political polarization.

Pixabay
Politics & Current Affairs
  • Canadian researchers find that excessive reliance on cars changes political views.
  • Decades of car-centric urban planning normalized unsustainable lifestyles.
  • People who prefer personal comfort elect politicians who represent such views.
Keep reading Show less

How to split the USA into two countries: Red and Blue

Progressive America would be half as big, but twice as populated as its conservative twin.

Image: Dicken Schrader
Strange Maps
  • America's two political tribes have consolidated into 'red' and 'blue' nations, with seemingly irreconcilable differences.
  • Perhaps the best way to stop the infighting is to go for a divorce and give the two nations a country each
  • Based on the UN's partition plan for Israel/Palestine, this proposal provides territorial contiguity and sea access to both 'red' and 'blue' America
Keep reading Show less

NASA astronomer Michelle Thaller on ​the multiple dimensions of space and human sexuality

Science and the squishiness of the human mind. The joys of wearing whatever the hell you want, and so much more.

Flickr / 13winds
Think Again Podcasts
  • Why can't we have a human-sized cat tree?
  • What would happen if you got a spoonful of a neutron star?
  • Why do we insist on dividing our wonderfully complex selves into boring little boxes
Keep reading Show less