Subjective Well-being and Partnership Dynamics; Are Same-sex Relationships Different?
Shuai Chen and
Jan C. van Ours
No 12320, CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers
Partnered individuals are happier than singles. This can be because partnership leads to more satisfactory subjective well-being or because happier people are more likely to find a partner. We analyze Dutch panel data to investigate whether there is a causal effect of partnership on subjective well-being. Our data allow us to distinguish between marriage and cohabitation and between same-sex partnerships and opposite-sex ones. Our results support the short-term crisis model and adaptation theory. We find that marital partnership improves well-being and that these benefits are homogeneous to sexual orientation. The well-being gains of marriage are larger than those of cohabitation. Investigating partnership formation and disruption, we discover that the well-being effects are symmetric. Finally, we find that marriage improves well-being for both younger and older cohorts while cohabitation only benefits younger cohort.
Keywords: Cohabitation; Happiness; Marriage; Sexual orientation; Subjective well-being (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J12 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
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