Narrator: This is Science Today. If you don't find a life partner, does that mean you are destined to being lonely and miserable the rest of your life? Well, contrary to what some family members may say or think, the answer is no. Psychologist and author Sonja Lyubomirsky of the University of California, Riverside, says it turns out that lifelong singles are just as happy as married people.
Lyubomirsky: And indeed, what's amazing is that people who have been single all their life tend to have many meaningful, deep relationships and friendships. And so they have an average of 12 meaningful relationships with friends and family members that they've kept sort of for decades. And I always think — wow, think about people who are married with kids. Do you have 12 friends who you've maintained for decades?
Narrator: Lyubomirsky is a recognized expert who has written research-driven books about happiness.
Lyubomirsky: I'm really narrowly focused on the research, but I also discovered that it's important to share the results of that research with the general public: What can the average person take from my research?
Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.