IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

Parenthood and happiness: Direct and indirect impacts of parenthood on happiness

  • Beja, Edsel Jr.
Registered author(s):

    Does parenthood bring happiness? This paper finds that the overall impact of parenthood on happiness is negative because the negative indirect impacts exceed the positive direct on happiness. What needs emphasizing is that, while the findings show that parenthood is still a positive status, parenthood undermines life domains in significant ways. In teasing out the different routes in which parenthood affects happiness, this paper thus highlights a problem with the standard conclusion in the extant literature: there is a conflation of the positive direct and negative indirect impacts of parenthood on happiness. The paper then argues that public policy and related programs can both strengthen the positive direct impact and help reverse the negative indirect impacts of parenthood on happiness.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    File Function: original version
    Download Restriction: no

    Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 53870.

    in new window

    Date of creation: 10 Feb 2014
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:53870
    Contact details of provider: Postal:
    Ludwigstraße 33, D-80539 Munich, Germany

    Phone: +49-(0)89-2180-2459
    Fax: +49-(0)89-2180-992459
    Web page:

    More information through EDIRC

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

    as in new window
    1. Max Haller & Markus Hadler, 2006. "How Social Relations and Structures can Produce Happiness and Unhappiness: An International Comparative Analysis," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 75(2), pages 169-216, 01.
    2. Rafael Di Tella & Robert J. MacCulloch & Andrew J. Oswald, 2003. "The Macroeconomics of Happiness," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(4), pages 809-827, November.
    3. Luis Angeles, 2010. "Children and Life Satisfaction," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 11(4), pages 523-538, August.
    4. Rachel Margolis & Mikko Myrskylä, 2011. "A Global Perspective on Happiness and Fertility," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 37(1), pages 29-56, 03.
    5. Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell & Paul Frijters, 2004. "How Important is Methodology for the estimates of the determinants of Happiness?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(497), pages 641-659, 07.
    6. Alois Stutzer & Bruno S. Frey, . "Does Marriage Make People Happy, Or Do Happy People Get Married?," IEW - Working Papers 143, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
    7. Luca Stanca, 2009. "Suffer the Little Children: Measuring the Effects of Parenthood on Well-Being Worldwide," Working Papers 173, University of Milano-Bicocca, Department of Economics, revised Oct 2009.
    8. Robert Emmons & Ed Diener, 1985. "Factors predicting satisfaction judgments: A comparative examination," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 16(2), pages 157-167, February.
    9. Luis Angeles, 2010. "Erratum to: Children and Life Satisfaction," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 11(4), pages 539-539, August.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:53870. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Joachim Winter)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.