Sorry, Parents: Childless Couples Say They're Happier Together

Illustration for article titled Sorry, Parents: Childless Couples Say Theyre Happier Together

Yet another study suggests that yes, there's a good chance the decision to have kids is going to put some strain on your marriage. Shocker! No matter how cute, they're still howling, demanding third wheels.

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That's according to the Telegraph, reporting on the results of a survey of 5,000 people across the U.K. by London's Open University. The paper says the childless reported happier marriages: "People without children are more satisfied with their relationships and more likely to feel valued by their partner than couples with children."

However: Mothers were the happiest group, and women without children came last. Dads, on the other hand, were just a little less happy than men without kids. I'd bet that's due in no small way to the social messaging around what should make us happy. Maybe women without children are just sick of being questioned, criticized and concern-trolled.

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But do people really have kids because they think it's going to make them "happy"? It's not like it's a secret that children are basically an expensive way to give yourself white hair and stress-induced ulcers, and it can't be that everyone's simply blinded by the Baby Gap cuteness when they decide to breed.

Plus, the Telegraph notes that those without children "did significantly more to 'maintain' their relationship, such as taking time to go out together or talk, than those with children," which seems like the real problem, not the kids. So if you're looking for a birthday present for a parent in your life, it'd be hard to go wrong with a babysitter.

Image via Shutterstock

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DISCUSSION

I'm sure as a childless couple it is very obnoxious getting all the "You should have babies/would be happier with babies" statements from folks, but as a youngish mom who reads mostly feminist and the like material I feel like all I see is "We are so much better off with kids. See? Get it?"

I'm happy for you not having kids, really I am. I didn't actually plan my child or the second one I'm pregnant with (partner getting snipped now, for those wondering lol), and my children, much as I love them, are not my whole life and never could be. You would only think so because I use Facebook to keep in touch with relatives who only care about the kid stuff.

My point? I don't know. This is a stupid post/rant. I just keep noticing how bummed out I feel reading posts like this, like I don't belong with this group of my favorite women folk :(