MSU Study: Being Childless Doesn’t Mean Misery
Father's Day is upon is, and being a dad is one of the joys of my life, but I also understand that it's not for everybody, and that's okay.
A new study from Michigan State University psychologists reveals a surprising number of adults have no interest in having kids at all. And it turns out, they’re just as happy and satisfied with life as those who have children.
Study authors set out to better understand these grown-ups who don’t want to be parents. They used a sample of one thousand adults who completed Michigan State University’s State of the State Survey for their research, first separating “child-free” individuals - those who choose not to have children - from other types of non-parents, including those who just haven’t had kids yet and those who aren’t able to have kids because of infertility or circumstance. And they found all the groups were equally satisfied with life, but there were a few differences in personality traits.
Co-author Zachary Neal explains:
We found that child-free individuals were more liberal than parents and that people who aren’t child-free felt substantially less warm toward child-free individuals.
But the thing that researchers say they were most surprised by? Just how many child-free people there are. They found one in four people in Michigan identified as child-free, which is much higher than the estimated rate from previous studies, which was only 2% to 9%.
Study authors say more research on the subject is needed and they hope to focus future studies on the specific reasons that motivate people to go child-free.
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