Consider it an early Father’s Day present, guys: your kids — yes, the ones who wake you up in the middle of the night and demand to be fed three meals a day — are actually making you really happy. Really.
Being a parent, especially a dad, appears to confer greater levels of happiness, positive emotion and meaning than being childless, according to new research to be published in Psychological Science. “If you have a dinner party, are parents at that party happier than non-parents at that dinner party?” says Sonja Lyubomirsky, a professor of psychology at University of California, Riverside, and the paper’s senior author. “Our analyses show they are happier and think about meaning more in their life.”
Parents were found to be happier during the day when they were involved in caring for their kids than when they were doing unrelated tasks, for example. Especially joyous? Older and married parents.
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