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Relationship status affects wellbeing

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has recently published data and an analysis on the state of the country’s National Well-being.

In a report entitled ‘What matters most to personal well-being?’ the ONS examined the question of what is most important to people’s own views about their own well-being.

The report found that well-being can be affected by a wide range of factors, including relationship status. Some key findings from the report include:

  • Self-reported health had the strongest association with personal well-being. For example, people reporting to be in very bad health had much lower personal well-being on average than those who said they were in good health.
  • Employment status was the second strongest relationship. People who were unemployed had lower personal well-being than those who were employed.
  • Third was relationship status, with people who were married/in a civil partnership having better personal well-being on average than those who were cohabiting, single, divorced or widowed.

‘Choice’ and ‘control’ emerged as important themes. For example, it is not just about having a job that is important to personal well-being, but also how content people are with that job situation. Permanent employees who wanted an additional or alternative job had lower personal well-being on average than those who did not want an additional or alternative job.

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