Guy comedies like The Change-Up, Hall Pass and The Hangover would have men believe that marriage is the beginning of the end of their lives. But science begs to differ. In fact, single men are 35 percent more likely to DIE sooner, or eight to 17 years earlier than their married buddies. Yup, not hearing wedding bells could lead to an early grave. Morbid? Yes. But totally true.
To be fair, men are more susceptible, but single ladies are affected too. The same research, which looked at over 500 million people (yowza!), showed unmarried women are 23 percent more likely to die an early death, or seven to 15 years earlier than those who are hitched.
But women aren't the ones who need to add insult to worry. What I mean is, we're already assaulted with the image of the doomed single women (a la Bridget Jones worrying that she'll die fat and alone and get eaten by dogs, agh) from the time we first make our Barbie and Ken dolls say "I do."
It's the commitaphobic guys especially who really need to hear and be freaked out by this news! The ones who think they can get by just fine doing their best Leonardo DiCaprio impression. Or the ones who are skittish about popping the question.
This study's not so much news as a reiteration of what most of us already, instinctively know ... which is that a healthy, happy marriage bolsters our well-being in various ways. Researchers say that without one, single people (not widowed or divorced people) likely suffer from a lack of a support network, health care, government assistance, and reduced wages.
But on a less technical level, just looking at my parents who will have been married 34 years this fall, and my grandparents who were married over 50 years, their partnerships helped them get through many a mental, emotional and physical hurdle. The support companionship provides is unparalleled by anything else. As much as my dad might grumble when my mom annoys him, or vice-versa, I swear they wouldn't be nearly as well without the other in the picture. And you can see the same phenomenon in senior couples. When one passes, sadly, it seems to be only a matter of time before the other faces a mental or physical decline.
In short, it's not rocket science that companionship should enrich our lives. Anyone idealizing bachelorhood need only put two and two together to realize they'll probably live a much happier, healthier life with a wife.
What do you think about this research?
Image via thechangeupmovie.com