Looks like it might be time to change the societal definition of "happiness".

It's long been believed that women with families are the happiest women in society. A new study has now debunked this out-of-date and out-of-touch ideology. The Guardian has reported that Paul Dolan, a Behavioral scientist from the London School of Economics conducted research that shows the societal standards of happiness have shifted, especially for women.

Back in the day, to be a woman with a husband and family was something most women aspired to have. That's no longer the case. Dolan's studies suggest that, in fact, women who've never had children nor have ever married are far happier than women with a family. Dolan's study shines light on an interesting fact about men, as well. While it shows that women are better off not getting married and having children, men should definitely aspire to marriage. His statistics show that men are healthier, earn more at work, and even live longer if they're married with children. Apparently, marriage and a family makes men settle down and not take so many risks, so it actually helps their life state whereas it makes women more stressed, less independent, and unfulfilled.

Of course, this new evidence doesn't discredit those women who do have families of their own. If the state of the family is strong, healthy, and in-tact, then sure, it's great to have that companionship. What this information really shows, though, is that society as a whole must broaden the conversation of female roles and expectations and what determines success. Getting married isn't an accomplishment or a right of passage. It's also not a measurement of success. Getting a degree is a huge accomplishment. You worked tirelessly for years to earn it. Marriage isn't earned. It's a choice. One that should almost be looked at as a business decision.

Bottom line: a woman's place is NOT in the home or kitchen anymore. Her place in the world is ANYWHERE SHE WANTS.

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