Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Experts discover whether it's better to be right or be happy

Date:
December 17, 2013
Source:
BMJ-British Medical Journal
Summary:
Doctors see many couples who lead unnecessarily stressful lives by wanting to be right rather than happy.

"Many people in the world live as couples, and we believe that it could be harmful for one partner to always have to agree with the other," researchers conclude.
Credit: Monkey Business / Fotolia

Doctors see many couples who lead unnecessarily stressful lives by wanting to be right rather than happy. But is it better to be right or to be happy?

Related Articles


In the Christmas edition of The BMJ, researchers at the University of Auckland in New Zealand try to answer this question by evaluating the effect of being right versus being happy on a couple's quality of life.

The study involved a married couple living in their own home.

The authors decided that the female participant would prefer to be right and the male participant would prefer to be happy. So the man was asked to agree with his wife's every opinion and request without complaint. Even if he believed the female participant was wrong, the male was to bow and scrape. The male was informed of the intervention while the female participant was not.

Quality of life of both participants was measured using a scoring scale of one to 10 (10 being the best possible quality of life).

The study had to be stopped after 12 days as the result of a severe adverse outcome -- this being that the male participant found the female participant became increasingly critical of everything he did. The man's quality of life score fell from 7 out of 10 at the start of the study to 3 at 12 days. The women's increased slightly from 8 to 8.5 at six days.

"It seems that being right is a cause of happiness, and agreeing with what one disagrees with is a cause of unhappiness," say the authors. "The results of this trial show that the availability of unbridled power adversely affects the quality of life of those on the receiving end."

They conclude: "Many people in the world live as couples, and we believe that it could be harmful for one partner to always have to agree with the other. However, more research is needed to see whether our results hold if it is the male who is always right."

Editor's Note: The British Medical Journal traditionally publishes a Christmas issue containing a number of articles of a lighthearted nature. For a full list of articles in the 2013 issue, see: http://www.bmj.com/content/347/7938


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BMJ-British Medical Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. B. Arroll, F. Goodyear-Smith, S. Moyes, T. Kenealy. Being right or being happy: pilot study. BMJ, 2013; 347 (dec17 2): f7398 DOI: 10.1136/bmj.f7398

Cite This Page:

BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Experts discover whether it's better to be right or be happy." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 December 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/12/131217210540.htm>.
BMJ-British Medical Journal. (2013, December 17). Experts discover whether it's better to be right or be happy. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 29, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/12/131217210540.htm
BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Experts discover whether it's better to be right or be happy." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/12/131217210540.htm (accessed March 29, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

S. Leone in New Anti-Ebola Lockdown

S. Leone in New Anti-Ebola Lockdown

AFP (Mar. 28, 2015) Sierra Leone imposed a three-day nationwide lockdown Friday for the second time in six months in a bid to prevent a resurgence of the deadly Ebola virus. Duration: 01:17 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
These Popular Antibiotics Can Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

These Popular Antibiotics Can Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

Newsy (Mar. 27, 2015) A popular class of antibiotic can leave patients in severe pain and even result in permanent nerve damage. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
WH Plan to Fight Antibiotic-Resistant Germs

WH Plan to Fight Antibiotic-Resistant Germs

AP (Mar. 27, 2015) The White House on Friday announced a five-year plan to fight the threat posed by antibiotic-resistant bacteria amid fears that once-treatable germs could become deadly. (March 27) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
House Ready to Pass Medicare Doc Bill

House Ready to Pass Medicare Doc Bill

AP (Mar. 26, 2015) In rare bipartisan harmony, congressional leaders pushed a $214 billion bill permanently blocking physician Medicare cuts toward House passage Thursday, moving lawmakers closer to resolving a problem that has plagued them for years. (March 26) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins