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1  
close relationships
and happiness
 - 
 . 
University of California, Los Angeles, USA
S relationships have long been considered one of the strongest and most important
pre dictors of happiness (Argyle,  ; Campbell, Converse, & Rodgers,  ; Myers,  ). is
assumption is in accord with the arguments of numerous scholars regarding the importance of
group living and interpersonal relationships in shaping human evolution (e.g., Baumeister &
Leary,  ; Taylor, Klein, Lewis, Gruenewald, Gurung, & Updegra ,  ). Empirical evidence
that relationships are tied to happiness is plentiful. For example, support from family, friends,
and especially from a signi cant other is tied to reports of greater subjective well-being (e.g.,
Walen, & Lachman,  ; Gallagher, & Vella-Brodrick,  ; Wan, Jaccard, & Ramey,  ).
Recently, however, critics have suggested that the status given to relationships in the  eld of hap-
piness overstates their centrality and importance (e.g., Lucas & Dyrenforth,  ; Lucas,
Dyrenforth, & Diener,  ). Although these critiques are themselves somewhat controversial,
they underscore important gaps in the empirical record and force scholars to reconsider their
assumptions about the strength of the association between social relationships and happiness.
We begin with issues of de nitions and measurement. We then review empirical  ndings on
the relative e ects of relationship quantity and quality on happiness, or more speci cally, sub-
jective well-being. We especially pro le the signi cant other relationship, which accounts for a
substantial portion of the variance that relationships play in subjective well-being (SWB).
Finally, we consider some less explored issues, such as the roles of gender, age, and culture in
moderating the e ects of relationships on happiness that may help to explicate some of the
puzzlingly modest associations in the literature.
S W-B:
D  M
In the relationships literature, happiness is most o en studied as SWB (cf. Diener,  ;
Diener et al.,  ). SWB refers to the subjective perceptions people hold of: () the general
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   
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1hedonic tone of their day-to-day lives and () how well their lives are going overall (Diener,
 ). Researchers in this tradition most commonly subscribe to the tripartite model, which
views SWB as being comprised of positive a ect (PA), negative a ect (NA), and life satisfac-
tion (LS) (Andrews & Withey,  ; Diener,  ; Diener, Suh, Lucas, & Smith,  ). In this
review, we use the term happiness when addressing broad-based questions and perspec-
tives, reserving the term SWB for references to speci c theoretical and empirical work in the
SWB tradition. Although a thorough discussion of the de nitions of happiness is beyond
the scope of this chapter (for recent reviews, see Miao, Koo & Oishi, Chapter , this volume;
Schimmack,  ), we adopt the tripartite model to highlight several key points: First, the
model provides a useful framework for categorizing the results of studies utilizing a wide
range of measures. For example, measures of mental health and depression are the most
commonly used measures of SWB, yet such measures primarily capture NA; PA and LS are
less frequently assessed (Reis,  ). Second, the pattern of correlations observed between
social relationships and happiness di ers depending on which factor of SWB is assessed. For
example, as will be seen, relationship quality is o en more highly correlated with LS than
with PA or NA, and so reviews that focus on a ective correlates of relationships may over-
look important e ects on LS.
A S R
Early research on relationships and happiness investigated satisfaction with social life
(Andrews & Withey,  ; Campbell et al.,  ), but attention soon turned to quantitative
measures, such as number of friends or con dants, social network size, degree of integra-
tion, and the frequency and amount of social activity (for a meta-analysis of early research,
see Okun, Stock, Haring, & Witter,  ). Reliable measures of marital relationships have
existed for decades (e.g. Dyadic Adjustment Scale; Spanier, ), although they are infre-
quently employed in the study of SWB. Qualitative assessment of other relationships began
to emerge during the s as a surge of interest in social support led to the development of
several well-validated measures that have continued to be widely used to the present day
(for a comprehensive review of social support measurement, see Cohen, Underwood &
Gottlieb,  ). e National Study of Midlife Development in the United States (MIDUS)
measures assess both the positive features of relationships (i.e. social support) and sources
of relationship strain, such as con ict (Schuster, Kessler, & Aseltine,  ). Intimacy and
closeness, related constructs, have attracted a great deal of attention in the relationships lit-
erature in recent years (for a comprehensive review, see Mashek & Aron,  ), but they
have yet to be fully studied in relation to LS and SWB. Other measures, such as the Network
of Relationships Inventory (NRI) (Furman & Buhrmester,  ) assess the quantity and
quality of a wide array of relationships. Social activity continues to be studied with more
re ned methods of measurement, such as experience sampling and the Day Reconstruction
Method (Kahneman et al.,  ; Srivastava, Angelo, & Vallereux,  ).
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    
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1 W  R
M  H
Although scholars frequently assume that relationships are important to happiness, the
question of why this should be the case is less frequently addressed. Baumeister and Leary
(  ) presented an in uential articulation of the importance of relationships to human
psychology, arguing that all humans have a fundamental “need to belong” that has been
shaped by natural selection over the course of human evolution.  ey maintain that this
need leads people to form relationships and resist their dissolution, with concomitant bene-
cial e ects on adjustment and well-being. Other researchers have emphasized the impor-
tance of intimacy, de ned as the perceived responsiveness of another to emotionally
self-relevant disclosures that re ect key aspects of one’s core psychological self (Reis,  ).
e primary functional argument for the importance of social relationships focuses on
social support and its salutary e ects on mental and physical health (for reviews, see Cohen
et al.,  ; and Taylor,  ).
A R I
 H
Are relationships reliably related to happiness? If one considers objective, measureable
aspects of an individual’s relationships and social network, then the answer is yes, but mod-
estly. Meta-analyses of the relation of objective social variables (such as number of relation-
ships and number of friends) to SWB have obtained e ect sizes in the small to moderate
range (Lucas & Dyrenforth,  ; Lucas et al.,  ). For example, a meta-analysis of the
association between “social activity” and SWB found that the average e ect on LS and hap-
piness was r = . (Okun et al.,  ), and another meta-analysis found that the quantity of
social activity had e ects ranging from r = .–., depending on the speci c dependent
measure used (Pinquart & Sörensen,  ). Cooper, Okamura, and Gurka (  ) assessed
both the frequency of and satisfaction with social activities. Across several samples, they
found that satisfaction with social activities was signi cantly correlated with PA ( r = .),
NA ( r = .) and LS ( r = .), whereas the frequency of social activities was consistently
related only to LS ( r = .). Note that these results indicate a stronger association of social
activity with LS than with the a ective components of SWB. Lucas and Dyrenforth (  )
analyzed data from the General Social Survey and found that the correlation between num-
ber of friends and happiness was only .. From their analysis and the meta-analytic  nd-
ings of Okun et al. (  ) and Pinquart and Sörensen (  ), Lucas and colleagues concluded
that the impact of social relationships on happiness has been overstated, and that theories of
SWB should be reconsidered accordingly (Lucas & Dyrenforth,  ; Lucas et al.,  ). It
should be noted, however, that Okun et al. (  ) included only studies published before
, and the Pinquart and Sörensen (  ) meta-analysis was conducted only on studies
with elderly populations.
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1 In sum, the e ect of objective measures of social relationships on happiness may be mod-
est, but the case is not closed. E ect sizes tend to be larger for subjective measures of the
quality of social relationships, relative to objective measures. Wan and colleagues (  )
measured receipt of four types of support from four (for single mothers) or  ve (for married
mothers and fathers) sources in a sample of parents (single fathers were not included due to
low n ). ey were able to predict  of the variance in LS for married women and  of the
variance in LS for married men, using all  support variables (including four measures of
partner support). However, nearly all of the explained variance for married men was attrib-
utable to partner support, whereas the addition of the  other measures accounted for an
additional . of the variance in married women’s LS. Support from four sources (child’s
grandparents, relatives, friends, and coworkers) predicted a total of . of the variance in
single mothers’ LS. Demir (  ) measured quality and con ict (derived from the NRI)
(Furman & Buhrmester,  ) in relationships with mother, father, friends, and romantic
partner (when relevant); these assessments accounted for  of the variance in a composite
measure of happiness in single participants and  of the variance in happiness of partici-
pants in intimate relationships. Similar results were obtained by Walen and Lachman
(  ), who used the MIDUS measures of social support and strain (Schuster et al.,  ) to
assess the combined e ects of family relationships, friendships, and intimate relationships
on LS ( variance explained), PA ( variance explained), and NA ( variance
explained).  ese results are especially noteworthy, as they also demonstrate the need to
distinguish among the three factors of SWB: the e ects on LS are considerably larger than
are the e ects on PA and NA.
However, as Lucas and colleagues (  ;  ) point out, such measures likely share com-
mon method variance with measures of SWB.  is is especially true when similarly worded
measures of relationships and SWB are used. For example, Alfonso, Allison, Rader and
Gorman (  ) constructed an Extended Satisfaction With Life Scale that measured domain
satisfactions by making only small modi cations to the wording of satisfaction with life ques-
tions.  us, it is not surprising that satisfaction with social life was highly correlated with LS
( r = .), as were satisfaction with family ( r = .) and romantic relationships ( r = .).
Despite such methodological concerns, it would be premature to draw strong conclusions
about the strength of the correlation between relationships and happiness without consider-
ation of additional issues. Chief among these are the diversity of relationships that charac-
terize human social life and the possibility that factors such as gender and age may moderate
the association of relationships with happiness.
I R, M,
 H
Although much of the extant literature on relationships and happiness has been devoted
to global measures of overall relationship quality, the lion’s share of the research has focused
on the role of intimate and marital relationships.  e mere fact of being married has
been repeatedly linked to happiness, irrespective of the quality of the marital relationship
(Dush & Amato,  ; Haring-Hidore, Stock, Okun & Witter,  ; Wan et al.,  ;
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    
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1Williams,  ). Indeed, marital status is frequently cited as one of the most well-established
predictors of happiness (e.g. Argyle,  ; Myers,  ), although the size of the association
between marital status and SWB is weak: In a meta-analysis, Haring-Hidore et al. (  )
found the average e ect to be small ( d = .; r = .). As noted, critics have pointed to this
and similar  ndings as evidence that reports of the importance of relationships to happiness
have been exaggerated (Lucas & Dyrenforth,  ).
Despite the weak overall e ect size, two of Haring-Hidore et al.s (  )  ndings point to
potentially important moderators of the relation of marriage to happiness. First, the average
e ect size for the relation of marital status to SWB was signi cantly larger for men ( d = .;
r = .) than it was for women ( d = .; r = .), suggesting that gender may be an
important factor to examine. In addition, e ect size magnitude was signi cantly correlated
with the age range of the samples ( r = .), such that being married was a stronger predic-
tor of SWB in younger samples than it was in older samples (the possible roles of gender and
age in moderating the link between relationships and happiness will be considered in more
detail below). Unfortunately, the meta-analysis by Haring-Hidore et al. (  ) includes only
studies published before , and no authoritative meta-analysis on the marital status-SWB
relation has appeared since that time.
Changes in marital status and happiness
Some scholars have argued that analysis of the simple e ect of marital status on happiness
actually confounds the separate e ects of being married relative to being a never-married
single with the e ect of being married relative to being divorced or widowed (Lucas &
Dyrenforth,  ). Indeed, research has found that the transition from singlehood to mar-
riage is associated with a small increase in SWB (Haring-Hidore et al.,  ; Lucas,  ;
Williams,  ). By contrast, the experience of divorce or the death of a spouse has a greater
adverse e ect than the positive e ect of being married (Lucas,  ). Other research has
found a steady, linear relationship between various stages of relationship commitment (e.g.
moving from singlehood to steady dating to marriage) and happiness (Dush & Amato,  ).
Marital quality and happiness
e literature on marital quality and happiness is large, but much of it has focused on how
marital quality is related to depression, whereas the role of marital quality in PA and LS has
not received as much attention. However, Dush and Amato (  ) compared the e ects of
marital status and “relationship happiness” (a composite of seven items) on multiple mea-
sures of happiness.  ey found that the correlation of marital status with a single-item global
measure of “life happiness” was positive but modest (i.e. r = .), whereas relationship hap-
piness had a considerably stronger correlation with life happiness ( r = .). Similar results
were obtained with measures of distress symptoms ( r s = − . and − ., respectively).
Proulx, Helms, and Buehler (  ) synthesized  ndings from  cross-sectional and 
longitudinal studies of marital quality and happiness.  ey found an average e ect of mari-
tal quality that was moderate in size for the cross-sectional studies ( r = .) and smaller but
E ect size d is reported when provided by the work cited, but the equivalent e ect size r is also provided
in order to facilitate comparison with other e ect sizes, which are for the most part reported as r .
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   
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1signi cant in the longitudinal studies ( r = .). Both of these e ects are considerably larger
than the . average e ect (in r ) reported by Haring-Hidore et al. (  ) for marital status.
In addition, the relation between marital quality and happiness was moderated by gender,
such that the association was stronger for women than for men. Unfortunately, the Proulx
et al. (  ) meta-analysis is limited by the scope of the literature search and the particular
choice of happiness measures selected for inclusion; speci cally, they included depression,
anxiety, and symptoms of distress, but not LS, happiness, or PA.
Marriage and happiness — a summary
e research a rms that there is an association between marital status and happiness,
although it is not large. By contrast, the relation between marital quality and happiness is
considerably stronger. Moreover, meta-analyses suggest that gender may moderate the e ect
of the marital relationship on happiness: Marital quality seems to be more closely associated
with well-being for women than for men (Proulx et al.,  ). In the next section, we turn
our attention to a consideration of such potential moderators of the link between relation-
ships and happiness.
M   E 
R  H
Due to space limitations, our review of moderating variables is not comprehensive but
rather serves to highlight a handful of moderators that have received substantial empirical
attention: gender, age, and culture. Other potential moderators are also brie y considered.
G e n d e r
ere are theoretical reasons to suggest that relationships may be more important to SWB
for women than for men. Drawing on evolutionary theory, the tend-and-befriend model
(Taylor,  ; Taylor et al.,  ) hypothesizes that, because women were historically
more involved in the care of dependent, immature o spring, they had greater needs to
turn to their social groups in times of threat for joint protection of self and o spring than
may have been true for men. As such, women may have developed more awareness of the
quality of their social relationships, because of their greater needs to depend upon them.
Consistent with this perspective is a large literature in sociology and social psychology
suggesting that relationships are more central to the activities and daily experience of
women than men (see Taylor (  ) for a review). Relative to men, adult women maintain
more same-sex close relationships, report more bene ts from contacts with their female
friends and relatives (although they are also more vulnerable to psychological stress
resulting from stressful network events), and provide more frequent and more e ective
social support to others (Ptacek, Smith & Zana,  ;  oits,  ). Moreover, studies in
elderly populations have found that older married men rely almost entirely upon their
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    
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1wives for social support, whereas older women report receiving more social support in
general and derive their support from a wider range of friends and family members
(Antonucci & Akiyama,  ; Gurung, Taylor & Seeman,  ; Patrick, Cottrell & Barnes,
 ). Other research has found parallel di erences throughout the life course (e.g.
Umberson, Chen, House, Hopkins, & Slaten,  ).
Whether gender di erences in social support quality and structure translate into di er-
ences in the importance of these variables to happiness is unclear. In a study of older rural
residents, Patrick and colleagues (  ) found that family support signi cantly predicted
both PA and NA, over and above the e ects of age, marital status, and education, in both
men and women. When friend support was added in a subsequent step, only family support
signi cantly predicted PA in men, whereas only the e ect of friend support was signi cant
in women (friend support did not signi cantly a ect NA in either gender). However, this
result should be interpreted with caution, as both family and friend support had positive
e ects on PA in both genders. In a similar vein, Antonucci and Akiyama (  ) used  mea-
sures of support quantity and quality to predict a single-item indicator of global happiness
in older adults, accounting for  and  of the variance in men and women, respectively.
With regard to marital quality, recall that the meta-analysis by Haring-Hidore and col-
leagues (  ) found that men’s SWB was more a ected by marital status than was women’s
SWB. Gender moderation of the association between marriage and happiness is found in
other studies as well (e.g. Lucas,  ; Umberson et al.,  ), although results are somewhat
inconsistent, including some null  ndings (e.g. Williams,  ).
Taken as a whole, the research suggests that the association between the quality of a per-
son’s relationships and happiness will di er by gender in a manner consistent with the tend-
and-befriend model, speci cally, that women’s happiness will be more a ected by
relationship quality than is true for men. In a recent study, the quality of young adults’ rela-
tionships (as indexed by the MIDUS measures) with their parents, siblings, close friends,
and roommates was examined in relation to LS (Saphire-Bernstein, Taylor, Moore, Lam, &
Seeman,  ). For women, the quality of every one of the relationships was highly and sig-
ni cantly related to LS ( r s = . ., mean r = ., all p s <.), whereas only the quality
of close friendships were associated with LS for men ( r = ., p <.; all other r s = − . to
., p s > .; mean r =.). Gender di erences in the magnitudes of these correlations
were signi cant only in some cases, but the trend for a stronger correlation in women was
present across all relationship types.  e ndings of this study, along with the meta-analysis
by Proulx et al. (  ), support the assertion that relationships are more important determi-
nants of happiness for women than is true for men.
A g e
Numerous scholars have speculated that the e ect of relationships on happiness might be
moderated by age. Ishii-Kuntz (  ) proposed that the relative in uence of friends on hap-
piness should decline in early adulthood and continue to remain low into early middle age,
whereas family relationships should have a much greater in uence on happiness during
these years; by contrast, relationships with friends may predominate in the determination
of happiness by late adulthood, where the in uence of relationships with family members
on happiness may be reduced. Ishii-Kuntz’s rationale for these predictions is that people
David et al_Chap60.indd 827David et al_Chap60.indd 827 6/22/2012 5:14:15 PM6/22/2012 5:14:15 PM
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   
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1presumably concentrate on establishing themselves within their occupational and family
contexts during early adulthood, whereas older adults may be more concerned with reci-
procity in relationships, which is di cult to maintain with family members. Generally
speaking, Ishii-Kuntz’s (  ) empirical pattern supported these predictions.
Culture
e e ects of cultural variation on happiness has been an interest in the  eld for some time
(for a review see Diener et al.,  ), but whether the presence and quality of relationships
have di erent e ects in di erent cultures has yet to be answered de nitively. Kwan, Bond
and Singelis (  ) measured the in uence of “relationship harmony” and self-esteem on LS
in college students from the USA and Hong Kong and found signi cant positive relations in
both groups of about the same magnitude. Similar  ndings were reported by Kang, Shaver,
Sue, Min, and Ying (  ). A cross-cultural study of SWB predictors in  countries found
that the relationship between marital status and SWB was largely the same across cultures,
although the association was moderated somewhat by national di erences in individualism-
collectivism (Diener, Gohm, Suh, & Oishi,  ).  us the available evidence suggests that
culture may not strongly in uence the association between relationships and happiness.
Additional moderators of the relationships–happiness link
Other moderators of the association between relationships and happiness link merit consid-
eration as well.  e personality trait extraversion may moderate the e ect of social relation-
ships on happiness (e.g. Hotard, McFatter, McWhirter, & Stegall,  ; Srivastava et al.,
 ), and Demir (  ) recently found that identity formation moderated the association
between relationship quality and SWB among emerging adults such that the correlation was
stronger among those at more advanced levels of identity formation. Additional candidates
for potential moderators include personal needs, values, goals, income and the successful
resolution of developmental tasks.
F D   S 
R  H
is brief review highlights several important issues relevant to the future of research on
relationships and happiness. First, the intuitive prediction that relationships are central to
happiness is largely supported in the literature, although the e ects are much stronger for
quality of relationships than for objective features of relationships, such as number of friends
or length of time married. Although shared method variance in the assessment of relation-
ship quality and happiness is likely a contributor to these e ects (cf. Lucas & Dyrenforth,
 ; Lucas et al.,  ), they also appear to represent a real contribution of relationship
quality to happiness. For example, the robust gender di erences in the association between
quality of relationships and SWB cannot be explained by shared method variance.
David et al_Chap60.indd 828David et al_Chap60.indd 828 6/22/2012 5:14:15 PM6/22/2012 5:14:15 PM
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    
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1Accordingly, the challenge for future researchers is to  nd ways to assess quality of relation-
ships and SWB that avoid overlapping variance.
A second conclusion is that, on the whole, there is far more literature devoted to study-
ing the association of the signi cant other relationship with happiness than to the associa-
tion of other close relationships with happiness.  is is an unfortunate gap, as family and
friends are also likely to a ect the degree to which people experience happiness. Researchers
have recently begun to investigate the e ect of friendship quality (Demir & Weitekamp,
 ) and the quality of the relationship with parents in both teens (Gohm, Oishi,
Darlington, & Diener,  ) and adults (Amato & A ,  ) on SWB. However, addi-
tional research is needed, especially with regard to the relative and cumulative e ects of the
quality of di erent types of relationships on happiness.
Rather than simply documenting that the e ects of relationships on happiness are posi-
tive, researchers should devote more attention to the parameters of relationships that make
them important for happiness. For example, the robust  nding in the social support litera-
ture that having a single con dante is more important to well-being than having a large
number of social relationships should be a strong signal to researchers that there is much
still to be learned about the pathways and mechanisms by which relationships a ect happi-
ness (see Taylor (  ) for a review).
e available literature makes clear that gender and age are likely to be important moder-
ators of the impact of relationships on happiness.  ere is a robust gender di erence, such
that the quality of all relationships appears to matter more for women’s happiness than is
true for men (e.g. Proulx et al.,  ; Walen & Lachman,  ; Wan et al.,  ). Although
there is some evidence that this gender di erence persists across the lifespan (e.g., Antonucci
& Akiyama,  ), changes in the patterns of relationships and their impact on happiness
are likely to be found as a function of age as well.
Measurement issues plague the study of relationships and happiness. A disproportionate
number of studies focus on how relationships are related to depression and psychological
distress, yet PA and LS are also extremely important components of SWB (Diener,  ;
Reis,  ; Schimmack,  ), and measures of these constructs have received far less
attention. Predictors of happiness may vary in the extent to which they predict these dis-
tinct subcomponents. For example, the LS component of SWB appears to be more strongly
related to relationship quality than are the a ective components of PA and NA (reviewed
earlier).  e exact reason for this di erential relation is not known, as it is not predicted by
current theories of SWB. According to the judgment model perspective (Kahneman,  ),
people are o en unaware of the true sources of their momentary a ective mood states but
are likely to explicitly consider important facets of their life when providing retrospective
evaluations of their lives as a whole.  us it is possible that relationships do not have very
strong e ects on PA and NA but that they are nevertheless given priority in the conscious
construction of LS judgments. Moreover, women may be more likely than men to draw on
the quality of their existing relationships when considering their life as whole, which might
account for the gender di erences described previously (cf. Saphire-Bernstein et al.,  ).
ese issues provide potentially fruitful avenues of investigation for future research.
Direction of causality issues, best examined in longitudinal data, also merit consider-
ation. To what extent does happiness lead people to construe their relationships as satisfy-
ing, and to what extent do satisfying relationships lead to happiness?  is fundamental
question has long been debated in the literature (reviewed in Diener et al.,  ), yet the
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1issue remains far from settled (see Lyubomirsky, King & Diener,  ). A related question
concerns the e ects of social networks on an individual’s happiness. Fowler and Christakis
(  ) recently presented evidence for the spread of happiness in social networks using
longitudinal social network data. Future research on the role of network dynamics in the
determination of happiness may reveal new and important e ects on human happiness
and well-being.
C
Social relationships, especially intimate relationships, have measurable e ects on happiness.
Although the e ects of objective relationship variables are relatively small, the role of rela-
tionship quality in happiness is considerably greater. When it comes to research on relation-
ships and happiness, the outlook is bright and the questions are many.  e task before us
now is to answer them.
Acknowledgments
Preparation of this article was supported by a grant from the National Science Foundation
(SES-).
R
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... This is essential for family-level analysis (Cox & Paley, 1997) and for explicating the long-term impact of the family on health and wellbeing. Yet to date, our understanding of the links between family relationships and adult health and happiness has been primarily informed through the examination of dyadic processes involving parent-child relationships (Chen et al., 2017;Diener & Diener McGavran, 2008) and intimate partner or marital relationships (Kiecolt-Glaser & Wilson, 2017;Saphire-Bernstein & Taylor, 2013), with some attention to family-level demographic characteristics such as family income (Cohen et al., 2010;Gibb et al., 2012) and family structure (Slade et al., 2017). Additionally, the focus of these studies is often on adverse family functioning such as high levels of marital conflict and aggression and parenting relationships that are unsupportive and neglectful (e.g., Repetti et al., 2002), rather than on positive aspects of the family. ...
... Happiness, or subjective well-being, is characterized as a more frequent experience of positive than negative affect (Bradburn, 1969;Lyubomirsky et al., 2005). The preponderance of research focuses on concurrent links with friendships and marriage (e.g., Saphire-Bernstein & Taylor, 2013) or happiness as a predictor of social relationships (e.g., Lyubomirsky et al., 2005), rather than the prospective influence of the family as a whole. Contemporaneous associations between conflict and relationship quality with parents and young adults' happiness have been reported (e.g., Wel et al., 2000), and family closeness and support correlated with perceived meaning in life (Lambert et al., 2010). ...
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... Also, it relates to the addiction process, in which a person substitutes direct with indirect communication [142]. Even more importantly, it was found that "close relationships are indeed related to happiness, although the extent of the association depends more on the quality than the quantity of relationships" [143]. The question of whether the metaverse can achieve the quality of face-to-face relationships is discussed in sections of this paper about addiction. ...
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... The present study aims to examine the role of adult attachment in preferences for interpersonal emotion regulation motives and in perceived social interaction outcomes with romantic and non-romantic partners during daily life. Perceived changes in relationship closeness and emotional well-being of the regulator were used as indicators of interpersonal emotion regulation outcomes because they are often superordinate goals of interpersonal emotion regulation and influence long-term well-being (Saphire-Bernstein & Taylor, 2013;Tamir, 2016). ...
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... Social support is generally perceived as well-intentioned actions given willingly from one person to another, which may produce a positive response and contribute to an individual's happiness [21,22]. Brownell and Shumaker [23] also characterized social support as "an exchange of resources between at least two individuals perceived by the provider or then recipient to be intended to enhance the well-being of the recipient." ...
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... Previous studies have indicated that the emotional state is strongly influenced by the presence of companions (Doherty, Orimoto, Singelis, Hatfield, & Hebb, 1995;Hatfield, Cacioppo, & Rapson, 1993;Wagner et al., 2015). As personal relationships are filled with experiences of hedonic events, including praise or kindness received from others (Kawamichi, Tanabe, Takahashi, & Sadato, 2013;Otake et al., 2006), positive social relationships are considered one of the most important modulators of subjective well-being (Hudson et al., 2020;Saphire-Bernstein & Taylor, 2013). In a previous study that tested how experiential effects vary as a function of the specific people currently present, participants reported that the level of experiential well-being is high in the company of their friends, romantic partners, and children (Hudson et al., 2020). ...
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Previous research has indicated that there is a relation between extraversion and subjective well-being (SWB), and that the sociability component of extraversion primarily accounts for this relation. Interactive effects of extraversion and social relationship variables on SWB were hypothesized and found in Study 1 using the Extraversion scale from the 16 PF, the Well-Being subscale of the Differential Personality Questionnaire, and several social relationship scales administered to 291 college students. Several multiple regression analyses indicated that strength of social relationships was a strong predictor of SWB only for introverted individuals. Study 2 replicated these findings with the Eysenck Personality Inventory and revealed important interactive relations between extraversion, neuroticism, and social relationships in predicting SWB. A strong relation between extraversion and SWB occurred only among individuals who were highly neurotic or who had poor social relationships.
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We assess evidence for gender differences across a range of relationships and consider whether the form and quality of these relationships affect the psychological functioning of men and women differently. Data from a national panel survey provide consistent evidence that men's and women's relationships differ. However, we find little evidence for the theoretical argument that women are more psychologically reactive than men to the quality of their relationships: Supportive relationships are associated with low levels of psychological distress, while strained relationships are associated with high levels of distress for women and for men. However, if women did not have higher levels of social involvement than men, they would exhibit even higher levels of distress relative to men than they currently do. We find little evidence for the assertion that men and women react to strained relationships in gender-specific ways--for example, with alcohol consumption versus depression.