Do people really adapt to marriage?
AbstractAlthough cross-sectional studies have shown a reliable association between marital status and subjective well-being, a recent longitudinal study (Lucas, Clark, Georgellis, & Diener, 2003) found no support for the idea that happiness increases after marriage. Instead, participants who got married reported short-term increases followed by complete adaptation back to baseline levels of well-being. However, researchers have criticized this study on two grounds. First, these results contradict cohort-based analyses from a nationally representative sample. Second, these analyses do not control for pre-marriage cohabitation, which could potentially inflate baseline levels of well-being. The original data (plus four additional waves) are reanalyzed to address these concerns. Results confirm that individuals do not get a lasting boost in life satisfaction following marriage.
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Date of creation: Nov 2005
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life satisfaction anticipation ; habituation ; marriage ; cohabitation;
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- Linda Waite, 1995. "Does marriage matter?," Demography, Springer, vol. 32(4), pages 483-507, November.
- Ronald Rindfuss, 1991. "The Young Adult Years: Diversity, Structural Change, and Fertility," Demography, Springer, vol. 28(4), pages 493-512, November.
- Beja, Jr., Edsel, 2012. "Who is happier: The housewife or working wife?," MPRA Paper 37551, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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