I found this article hard to believe but it was on the Internet so it much be true. (HA!)
A newspaper from the U.K. called the Daily Mail reports that parents actually have lower blood pressures than people who are not parents. According to researchers who studied 198 adults those who had children averaged four points lower than those adults who didn’t. The assumption is that parents feel that they have a purpose in life and that this reduces stress in the long run.
I have a few of my own conclusions about this study. I think that a lot of us who parent may just have become numb to the things that tend to raise blood pressure. When you are pulling junior off the ceiling fan for the umpteenth time you stop having adrenalin responses. The researchers said that there was no difference in the blood pressures of parents with one child and many children, that it was parenting, not how many children were involved that made the difference.
O.k I am not sure I buy this. I would like to believe that after you have dealt with several children you are calmer than when you have only dealt with one child… or maybe catatonic would be a better word. I think that after having 8 children learn to ride a bike I am impervious to scraped knees, chipped teeth, and goose-eggs on foreheads. Surely there has to be some force in the universe that allows parents with many children an extra measure of calm.
What do you think? Is the research off the wall or valid? Do you think you (as a parent) live with less stress than people who aren’t parents?