AARP survey: The Secret Lives of Single Women

Wow. Imagine finding single women all over the place who admit that life can be pretty tough but that they really are happy being single. AARP can reach a lot of people with its massive member base, so when they report on The Secret Lives of Single Women, it’s worth hearing.

Talk about prejudice. Listen to a researcher found 950 college students describing married people–“happy, loving, secure, stable, and kind.” Their words for singles were more like “lonely, shy, unhappy, insecure, inflexible, and stubborn.” Good grief. Does that sound like you? I’m pretty sure nobody I know would describe me that way! But then, we’re talking about “knowing” someone versus guessing what people you don’t know might be like. A different ballgame–and therein lies the rub.

Love this myth buster: “Myth #10 Single women aren’t as healthy as married women.
Reality: Generally true, but now single women are taking charge of their health just as they’re taking control of other parts of their lives.For decades health researchers have consistently found that married women are healthier than single women. But the most negative health outcomes for women have been associated with those who are divorced or widowed. Very little attention has been paid to the long-term health outcomes of women who are contentedly single. One surprising finding to come out of the AARP Foundation women’s survey, however, is that single women tend to think of themselves as healthy—46 percent said their health is excellent or very good (emphasis mine–what do we know about the power of the mind over the body???). In addition, 90 percent of the single women in the study said they’re very or somewhat confident that they’re doing all they can to keep themselves healthy. “These findings seem promising,” says Jean Kalata, AARP research analyst and principal researcher for the AARP Foundation women’s study, “but we need more research into single women and the effects of happiness on health.”

Anyway, if you have a few minutes, read the report. It’s fun to hear such good things about single working women!


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