Marriage Good for You
University of Otago clinical psychologist Kate Scott led a study of the effects of marriage on 34,493 people across 15 countries finding that it really is good for you and reduces the risks of depression and anxiety. Scott said that the study found that getting married, compared to not getting married, was good for the mental health of both genders, not just women, as previous studies had found. It also found that ending marriage through separation, divorce or death is linked to an increased risk of mental health disorders, with women more likely to resort to substance abuse and men more likely to become depressed. “What makes this investigation unique and more robust is the sample is so large and across so many countries and the fact that we have data not only on depression … but also on anxiety and substance use disorders,” Scott said. “In addition, we were able to look at what happens to mental health in marriage, both in comparison with never getting married, and with ending marriage.” The study was recently published in the British journal Psychological Medicine. It was conducted in association with the World Health Organisation, Harvard University and a number of other international organisations.