Being Single Has Many Positive Benefits, Says One Doctor

Table for one, please. No shame.

Being single doesn’t mean being lonely—in fact, one doctor found that there are surprising benefits to the table for one life.

Dr. Bella DePaulo, a social scientist at the University of California, Santa Barbara, studied nearly 1,000 studies of both single and married people and drew from her own research. What she found was that “singles tended to be more self-reliant and self-motivated than those in a relationship.” Singles also grew as individuals more than people who were part of a couple, and they set more goals for themselves. They also found value in their relationships with parents, siblings, friends, and coworkers. 

“When people marry, they become more insular,” she said. “The preoccupation with the perils of loneliness can obscure the profound benefits of solitude. It is time for a more accurate portrayal of single people and single life—one that recognizes the real strengths and resilience of people who are single, and what makes their lives so meaningful.”

Being single also led to less negative emotions, because you weren’t relying on someone else and becoming disappointed in their behavior. In other words, you love and trust yourself. 

“More than ever, Americans can pursue the ways of living that work best for them. There is no blueprint for the good life,” she added.   

The research was presented American Psychological Association's 124th Annual Convention.

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