Marital Status, Gender, and Perception of Well-Being

J Soc Psychol. 1997 Feb;137(1):95-105. doi: 10.1080/00224549709595417.


Authors of several research studies in the United States have found a positive relationship between marital status and physical and psychological well-being, and gender differences in well-being among married and unmarried people are well documented. Several explanations have been suggested for the findings of gender differences in perception of well-being among married and unmarried individuals. The combined 10-year (1982-1991) "General Social Surveys" data of the National Opinion Research Center (1991) were used in this reexamination of the relationships of marital status and gender to perception of well-being. The results of analysis of variance are the basis for discussion of observed differences in perception of well-being as to gender, marital status, race, and financial status. The results indicate that marriage enhances perceptions of well-being for both men and women. Married women expressed more satisfaction than men did.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Attitude to Health*
  • Continental Population Groups
  • Female
  • Health Status*
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Income
  • Male
  • Marital Status*
  • Men / psychology*
  • Middle Aged
  • Personal Satisfaction*
  • United States
  • Women / psychology*