Toward a Better Understanding of the Relationship Between Friendship and Happiness: Perceived Responses to Capitalization Attempts, Feelings of Mattering, and Satisfaction of Basic Psychological Needs in Same-Sex Best Friendships as Predictors of Happiness

Abstract

Friendship is a consistent correlate of happiness, yet less is known about the associations of friendship specific experiences and feelings with happiness. In this study (n = 4,382) the roles of perceived responses to capitalization attempts, perceived mattering to and satisfaction of basic psychological needs in same-sex best friendships in happiness among men and women were investigated. Findings showed that although all of the friendship variables were positively associated with happiness to varying degrees, basic needs satisfaction emerged as the strongest predictor of happiness. Additional analyses revealed that competence need satisfaction was the most important need predicting happiness. Importantly, these findings were gender invariant. The findings were discussed in light of theory and empirical literature and suggestions were made for future research.

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Correspondence to Melikşah Demir.

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Demir, M., Davidson, I. Toward a Better Understanding of the Relationship Between Friendship and Happiness: Perceived Responses to Capitalization Attempts, Feelings of Mattering, and Satisfaction of Basic Psychological Needs in Same-Sex Best Friendships as Predictors of Happiness. J Happiness Stud 14, 525–550 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10902-012-9341-7

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Keywords

  • Capitalization
  • Ethnic groups
  • Friendship
  • Happiness
  • Perceived mattering
  • Psychological needs satisfaction
  • Same-sex best friendship