Thursday, April 2, 2009

Growing up with sisters may lead to people being "happy and balanced"

From BBC, a study conducted by lead researcher Professor Tony Cassidy at the University of Ulster (UK) suggests that families with daughters are more "open and willing to discuss feelings," which can be especially important after stressful family events. The findings are to be presented at the British Psychological Society in Brighton.
Researchers quizzed 571 people aged 17 to 25 about their lives and found those who grew up with sisters were more likely to be happy and balanced.

During the study, participants filled in psychological questionnaires which researchers used to assess a range of issues, including whether they had a positive outlook and any mental health problems.
What do you think of this?

The article doesn't explain how the researchers controlled for other factors that may have contributed to the results, or why exactly having daughters in ones' family might contribute to someone ending up being "happy and balanced" compared to people growing up in families with brothers (brother were said to have the opposite effect).

The main reason I read the article was its tagline that read:
Sisters spread happiness while brothers breed distress, experts believe.
I'm not convinced at all yet. Will wait for more details.


earlgreyrooibos said...

Well, my family would certainly be an exception. My parents only had daughters, and we NEVER discussed our feelings - even stressful/traumatic events were expected to be forgotten immediately.

So either correlation does not imply causation in this study, or my family is an outlier.

petpluto said...

My family would be another exception. Well, kind of. Unlike earlgreyrooibos, we discussed the hell out of our feelings, especially after stressful family events. Unfortunately, that seemed to just make familial life all the more stressful and unhappy. "Family meetings" generally included at least four people breaking down hysterically (I'm from a family of five), raised voices, and the consensus that family meetings were not good and that we'd never do it again. Until the next time a Big Important Thing needed to be addressed.

Of course, I'm from an incredibly high-strung group of people who live best when there's tons of stress, so I'm sure we'd be outliers for any study.

Carol said...

bwahahahahahaahahahahahha, (breath) bwahahahaaahahahahahahahaha.

I'm close to my brother and my sister was horrid to grow up with, thank goodness she moved out the moment she turned 18.

Anonymous said...

interesting study. but you must also note that the report is squished down in a readable format for a mass audience (concerning its a news report), so concerning how they conducted the experiment would not be incredibly detailed.
i come from a family of a father, two sisters and one brother, and i must say that it is the sisters who do most of the talking (meaning: discussing painful things) unlike the men in the house. whereas my men in the family rarely try to talk out crappy stuff and try to ignore it.

lindsay said...

I find that tagline so interesting, because we're led to believe that non-related women friends are catty bitches while non-related men friends are "bros."