a paradox due to which well-being is lost, but satisfaction is gained

paternity paradox: Parents experience a decrease in well-being with the arrival of a child, but still find happiness and satisfaction in life. Child means reducing sleep, eating or rest time; something that could lead to dissatisfaction, but it doesn’t.
“The experience of parenthood and motherhood may even lead to a profound form of well-being called eudaimonic well-being,” they explain. Trudy Meehan and Jolantha Burkefrom the university’s Center for Positive Health Science, who continue their article in Talk: “It’s about the feeling of a life worth living, which is different from short-term happiness.”

This eudaimonic well-being can be experienced by both men and women, although, as Meehan and Burke detail, in the case of mothers it depends on how balanced parenting tasks are with their husbands. Their conclusion is that happiness does not depend on the decision to have children or not, but on whether a person has control over this issue and whether he has the necessary support.

Various studies have examined whether not having children affects people’s happiness and life satisfaction. One of them, for example, analyzed the situation of 161 women who were unable to have children either because they could not find a partner or because of infertility. Their well-being was no different from that of others, although 12% said their lives had no clear direction, 24% were psychologically well, and the rest had moderate levels of well-being. Another study concluded that fighting for a child leads to increased post-traumatic growth. In contrast, studies of men who were unable to have children due to infertility found that many of them experienced sadness, but it decreased with age. “Finding ways to redefine one’s identity and role in society beyond parenthood has helped many find meaning and satisfaction in their lives,” the experts explain about the analysis.
However, a study called “In Defense of Parenthood” by S. Katherine Nelson concluded that having a child is closely linked not only to happiness, but also to life expectancy.

Nelson and his team based their analysis on the intersection of three previous studies in which they asked about the level of happiness and satisfaction in their lives. The first one showed that those who had children reported at a higher level that they had a very positive life compared to others. Second, parents felt better in their daily lives as a result of parenthood. Lastly, respondents who had children expressed higher levels of positive feelings about the simple fact of caring for their children. Parents reported the highest levels of happiness in all three studies.

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