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Scientists unveil optimal age for being alone and avoiding relationships

Scientists unveil optimal age for being alone and avoiding relationships Illustrative photo (Photo:
Author: Daria Shekina

Scientists have identified an age at which solitude aids in better coping with a broken heart and preparing for new relationships. It's believed that at this particular age, taking some time for oneself before entering marriage is beneficial. The findings of this new research are discussed by the Daily Mail.

Solitude at a certain age comes with its benefits. For instance, it assists in better coping with unsuccessful relationships or in preparing for the future.

A team from the Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute found that individuals who enter relationships immediately after leaving their parental home are less prepared to cope with a broken heart later in life compared to those who remained single at ages 20-25.

The study's authors suggest this might be because young solitary individuals have time to develop more life skills, resources, and connections, which aids them in handling more significant and unsuccessful relationships in the future.

Additionally, researchers believe that solitude in one's 20s might lead to more flexible relationship expectations.

Partners who marry at a younger age tend to idealize relationships and believe they will last forever. However, solitary young individuals refrain from such assumptions and suffer less if they face failures.

The lead author of the study, Dr. Lonneke Van der Berg, notes that loneliness is often perceived negatively, but in reality, this period can be a great opportunity for self-exploration and learning something new.

There's also another aspect: partnership life skills. The younger the couple, the less experienced they are in these matters. Young women in relationships tend to rely more on their partner's finances, while men are less inclined to share household chores.

The researchers analyzed data from a German experiment conducted from 1984 to the present, observing 1000 individuals: 190 women and 151 men were solitary after leaving their parental home, while 400 women and 262 men immediately entered relationships.

The team focused on life satisfaction during three periods:

  • Initial life with a romantic partner
  • Breakup
  • Life after the breakup

Women who left their parental home and immediately started living with a partner experienced a drop in life satisfaction after a breakup. However, their satisfaction levels significantly increased in the following three years.

For solitary women, satisfaction levels also decreased but quickly returned to the previous mark after the breakup.

Men who immediately got into relationships were dissatisfied immediately after a breakup but showed an increase within a year. On the other hand, those who were solitary experienced minimal consequences after a breakup, and their satisfaction levels only grew over two years.