Single People Are Doomed


WTF, science? Today in news we could, perhaps quite literally, live without, it turns out that not only are single people kinda screwed tax-wise and forced to buy their married friends gifts in honor of their marriages and their children whom we must also affix photographs of to our sad little single-people refrigerators and smile and grin and bear it, never expecting gifts in return, but also…we will quite likely die sooner.

It’s long been established by science that single people (particularly, men) do statistically worse in terms of overall health and longevity than the marrieds, but according to new research from the University of Louisville that compiled data from 90-some previous studies of approximately 500 million people, the “risk of death was 32 percent higher across a lifetime for single men compared to married men. Single women face a 23 percent higher mortality risk, compared to married women.”

Except, of course, that we all have a 100 percent risk of dying. That’s not really a risk so much as a fact. But, in real terms, this means that single people (defined as people who had never married) could die faster than their coupled friends.

NBC breaks it down:

Single men could die about eight to 17 years earlier than their married male friends, says Roelfs, citing that nearly all of the data was gleaned from studies conducted in the last 60 years. Women don’t fare much better. They could die seven to 15 years earlier than their married female counterparts.

Reasons for this include lesser health benefits for single folks along with less earning potential, public assistance, and social support. And less nagging from another to eat healthily or behave yourself. But if you can hang in there, single people, until you’re in your curmudgeonly 70s, your chances of outliving the marrieds get a lot better.

Note that since the studies leave out divorced and widowed folks, there’s some skepticism as to their accuracy in the first place. And, of course, being unhappily married can’t be too great for you.

The ultimate upside to all of this, presuming accuracy, however, is that it means less time having to sit through dinners with our married pals as they ask us to regale them with entertaining stories of our singlehood since they’re just boring old settled-down married fogeys [adorable smirk] and, oh yeah, don’t we want to be set up with their insurance coworker’s darling brother? It may be better just to die sooner and escape having to tell them later that you puked on the dude’s shoes after making out with him and probably won’t be inviting them to your wedding anytime soon.

Or maybe that’s just us. By the way, we don’t really think single people are doomed. Unless you mean…doomed to be awesome.

Single people may die younger, new study finds [NBC]