Journal of Happiness Studies

, Volume 11, Issue 4, pp 523–538

Children and Life Satisfaction

Research Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10902-009-9168-z

Cite this article as:
Angeles, L. J Happiness Stud (2010) 11: 523. doi:10.1007/s10902-009-9168-z


We investigate the relationship between having children at home and life satisfaction. Contrary to much of the literature, our results are consistent with an effect of children on life satisfaction that is positive, large and increasing in the number of children. The effect, however, is contingent on the individual’s characteristics. In particular, our findings are consistent with children making married people better off, while most unmarried individuals appear to be worse off with children. We also analyze the role of factors such as gender, age, income and education.


Life satisfactionHappinessChildrenMarital statusBritish household panel survey (BHPS)

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of EconomicsUniversity of GlasgowGlasgowUK