Married Couple Found Out the Hard Way That Being Right Is Best


Happy wife, happy life, right? Um, maybe not. Three doctors in New Zealand designed a unique marriage experiment to test whether or not a couple could become happier if the husband did everything the wife wanted. It lasted 12 days before he was too miserable to continue any longer.

The results of the study to test the theory that it was better to be “right” than “happy” were published in the more lighthearted Christmas issue of the British Medical Journal, but they’re worth noting.

One couple was randomly chosen, and the wife was only instructed to record her happiness level from one to 10 on a daily basis. The husband, however, was asked to agree with his wife about everything, and do whatever she said, even if he disagreed with her.

More from The Stir: Optimism Won’t Destroy Your Marriage But It May Prolong a Bad One

I guess they were hoping to see that if the wife were “right” about everything, she’d be happier. It didn’t work out like that, though.

After 12 days, the man's quality of life had fallen from a seven to a three. Conversely, the wife's happiness raised from an eight to an eight-and-a-half, but after six days she became hostile toward the researchers recording the data and gave no more information.

"It seems that being right is a cause of happiness, and agreeing with what one disagrees with is a cause of unhappiness," the researchers wrote in the study.

Also worth noting is that the husband reported that the wife became “increasingly critical of everything he did.”

And we all know that men just love to be criticized, right?

What I want to know is whether or not the woman felt happier after she stopped recording the results. Did she figure out what was going on, notice that her husband was becoming increasingly depressed, and refuse to acknowledge that she was happy getting her way all the time? Or was she confused or sad about the apparent indentured servitude? We may never know…

Would you be happy if your spouse agreed with you all the time about everything?

Image via Edvard March/Corbis

in the news, marriage


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adamat34 adamat34

No way. Thats pod people BS. Sex is better with a little passion.


Never wanted a "yes" man.I need some spunk.

the4m... the4mutts

I want a man with whom I have lots of common ground, but not a "yes" man.

I could have never married someone who was my opposite. So, luckily for us, I dont need a little "see what I have to deal with" type experiment.

We have the same views on chores, child rearing, morals, food, bills, all of it.

We disagree on religion, books to read, Obama, (I can see some good points, he wishes he would fall off the face of the earth) etc.

I want a partner, not a robot slave.

Rhond... RhondaVeggie

I'd be interested to see the results if the woman agrees with the husband all the time.

Todd Vrancic

Would probably be the same.

mrsbovee mrsbovee

This seems like a pointless experiment.

srodd... sroddy1087

I'm not married to a yes man. I'm married to one whom challenges me, and I challenge as well. We are both willing to compromise and to have friendly debates over things we disagree on. And you know what? We are really happy. I wouldn't want to be married to a man who always agreed with me. I'd be bored and irritated with him. 

nonmember avatar Jen

Well, I'll come right out and admit it. I would be FINE with having a husband who agreed with me on everything, a "yes man." If I believed he genuinely did it would be even BETTER. But since no such man exists I will settle for the occasional argument or disagreement. Not much choice, really.

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