A woman’s wedding day is one of the most important days of her life. For years before it, she’s been waiting for the right guy to pop the question. For months on end, she’s been planning everything from what the length of her veil will be to which appetizers will be offered at the reception to where she and her new husband should honeymoon. For weeks on end, she’s been getting last-minute details together, all to make the wedding of her dreams come true.
When it comes to marriage, many people (especially women, if we’re being honest) tend to spend a lot of time talking about the lavish wedding, the sparkly engagement ring, and the romantic honeymoon. A whole lot of attention is given to the act of getting married. But what doesn’t get as much attention is marriage in the long-term, lifelong sense.
To be clear, a woman’s wedding day is only the beginning of her journey. It’s certainly important, but only because of the significance of the marital union she is entering – a union through which two people create one life together, choose to be faithful to and love one another for the rest of their days, and to grow together. For some, this sounds far more romantic than any wedding venue you could possibly book; for others, this sounds like an enormous commitment to make – one that might become a bit of a drag, or cause a woman to lose her sense of self, or trap her into an agreement she’ll one day regret.
But marriage isn’t just a slog that forces women to stay trapped with the same man forever, no matter what, or to give up her identity in order to be a good little wife. It actually has countless benefits for women (and men too – but that’s a whole other conversation). What are those benefits, you ask?
Marriage Makes Us Happier and Improves Our Mental Health
It should hardly be a surprise that getting to spend the rest of your life with someone you love will make you happy and improve your mental health. Even so, let’s dive into some statistics to illustrate how much happier married women are.
A study conducted by a team of Harvard researchers found that married women exhibited “greater psychological well-being on multiple indicators including greater positive affect, purpose in life, hope, and optimism.” A 2021 General Social Survey revealed that women ages 18-34 who were married and mothers reported happiness at much higher rates than women who had never married or had children; 30% of the married women surveyed who had children said they were “very happy,” whereas only 7% of the unmarried women without children said the same.
Being married has been shown to stave off loneliness and offer people a greater sense of belonging.
A study published by the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health found that women are “adversely affected by multiple partnership transitions [or breakups]” and reported that women who had married had better mental health than women who had stayed with and cohabited with their first boyfriend. Lastly, in a world and generation that struggles deeply with loneliness, being married has been shown to stave off loneliness and offer people a greater sense of belonging.
Marriage Offers Us Better Financial Security
Should you marry solely for money? We’re certainly not saying that – but we’d be lying if we said greater financial security wasn’t a wonderful benefit that comes along with tying the knot with the love of your life. And with essentially everything rising in cost, it’s important to think about the future of your finances.
Even economists agree that getting married is better for your financial health than long-term relationships, regardless of if the wife stays home with the kids or continues to work. Married women are more able to build wealth over time with their husband than women who stay single. Along with that, married couples qualify for tax deductions and credits that singles don’t. They also qualify for lower insurance premiums than single policyholders. Not to mention, marriage means that there are two people tackling the bills instead of just one, so building up your savings becomes that much more feasible.
Marriage Improves Our Physical Health
Marriage does a lot more for women than just offering them greater happiness, financial health, and a life partner we can always count on. It actually helps improve our physical health too. A study published in Global Epidemiology found that of the women they studied over a period of four years, the ones who got married during that period had a 35% lower risk of death and lower risk of cardiovascular disease.
People in happy marriages were more likely to exercise.
Another study found that people in happy marriages were more likely to exercise. And others find that married people are far less likely to engage in unhealthy, risky behaviors such as binge drinking (and have reduced overall consumption of alcohol).
The United States Census Bureau reported that married people under 65 were more likely to have health insurance than people who’d never married and those who were divorced, widowed, or separated. In the same vein, married women are more likely than their single counterparts to get regular cancer screenings.
We Live Longer
When all is said and done, we’re just trying to survive and live our best life, right? Well, it turns out that getting married doesn’t only increase the likelihood that you’ll live your best life, it also increases the likelihood that you’ll live longer. A study published by ScienceDirect reported that married women, on average, live longer than unmarried women – which makes sense when we know that married women’s physical health and their habits of visiting the doctor are generally better.
Both extremes when it comes to marriage have it wrong. There’s far more to marriage than the wedding day, and being married doesn’t trap women into a commitment she’ll regret forever. Instead, the facts show that married women’s mental, physical, and financial health all improve greatly, making getting married to the right man the best decision she’ll ever make.
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