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Scientists Find Gene That Predicts Happiness In Women 323

An anonymous reader writes "For reasons that scientists have not conclusively determined, women are happier than men. And now, researchers think that they may have pinpointed one of the reasons for that. They have found a gene in women that predicts the level of happiness in women. 'After controlling for various factors, ranging from age and education to income, the researchers found that women with the low-expression type of MAOA were significantly happier than others. Compared to women with no copies of the low-expression version of the MAOA gene, women with one copy scored higher on the happiness scale and those with two copies increased their score even more. While a substantial number of men carried a copy of the "happy" version of the MAOA gene, they reported no more happiness than those without it.'"
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Scientists Find Gene That Predicts Happiness In Women

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  • by Spy Handler ( 822350 ) on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @03:33PM (#41170869) Homepage Journal

    The picture I'm getting is that genetic tech and biochemistry is still in the dark ages. I mean, they have no idea how gene X works on a biochemical level, so they take a survey of people with gene X and ask how happy they are... and call that a study.

    The good news is, once they figure this shit out and can accurately model all the biochemical reactions inside the human body, the possibilities are endless.

  • Re:GATTACA (Score:5, Insightful)

    by CubicleZombie ( 2590497 ) on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @03:35PM (#41170887)

    Now you can analyze your girlfriend's* DNA and see if she's only acting happy and would become miserable after marriage!

    It's a lot easier than that. Just plan a wedding. Whatever she's like during that process is what she'll be like after marriage. Bridezilla == Wifezilla.

    Then throw a screaming baby and some surging hormones into the mix.

    Somebody kill me.

  • by Frosty Piss ( 770223 ) * on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @03:39PM (#41170949)

    reproduction for females is costly and dangerous, reproduction for males is cheap

    First of all sex is more than reproduction, you know this, right?

    for a man any cooter will do, for a woman a specific wang is sought after

    Second of all, you know that sex is for more than reproduction, right?

    The VAST majority of sexually active females are *not* trying to have a baby.

  • Re:Spoilers (Score:5, Insightful)

    by dkleinsc ( 563838 ) on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @03:39PM (#41170951) Homepage

    That's not true and you know it. If an 80-year-old woman came up to you and asked "Sex?", you'd probably leave very very quickly. Also, some guys don't just sleep with anything they can and want to evaluate potential partners for being decent-looking, reasonably healthy, and not crazy before jumping into bed.

    Some real reasons women might be happier (as always, variations within a gender are much wider than variations between an average man and an average woman):
    - Women tend to do a better job of building up a support network of friends and family, so if something goes wrong they have help they can call on.
    - Moms tend to bond more closely with their children than dads. If you have kids, you're generally happier when you spend more time with them.
    - As of quite recently, women are more educated than men, and also are more likely to be employed. Material security contributes a great deal towards happiness.

  • Re:Spoilers (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mcgrew ( 92797 ) * on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @03:51PM (#41171107) Homepage Journal

    Actually, I'd like to see the study that says woman are happier than men, because that flies in the face of my experience. Most of the women I know are either depressed or angry all the time.

    The unhappy men I know are all married.

  • by HeckRuler ( 1369601 ) on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @03:52PM (#41171137)

    The VAST majority of sexually active females are *not* trying to have a baby.

    Well, NOW, yeah. But for the vast majority and prior banging, on the evolutionary time scale, the purpose was baby-making.
    I mean, we're talking about genetics and the evolutionary forces that push for those genes, right?

    It's legacy code that's vastly out of date, but hey, it's what we've got today and we have to live with it. Eventually we'll get around to refactoring it all, cleaning up the code, and steamlining the crufty parts, but it's good to know where we're at now.

  • Re:Spoilers (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Hatta ( 162192 ) on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @03:59PM (#41171225) Journal

    That's not true and you know it.

    It's much closer to true than you want to admit. If you send a group of average looking college students onto campus to randomly proposition [] people of the opposite sex, the majority of females will get affirmative responses, and the majority of males will get negative responses. Women have a much easier time than men getting laid. That's scientific fact.

  • by Frosty Piss ( 770223 ) * on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @04:01PM (#41171253)

    He's referring to the using of sex to get one's way/money/goods I believe. That's why when you get married, you stop getting it...

    Maybe I'm in the minority, but my wife likes sex just fine.

    Maybe *YOUR* wife just doesn't like sex with YOU?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @04:29PM (#41171617)

    Happiness undoubtedly is largely a physiological characteristic of a person. The question is then, why didn't evolution sort the genes out so that we would be happy most of the time? The obvious answer is that happiness isn't a good thing for the survival of the individual.

    I believe we were "created" to strive to be happy, but we weren't "meant" to be happy except for some fleeting, orgastic moments. Happiness is the carrot, suffering is the stick that propels us to survive and procreate. Pain is there to make us suffer but so is love, which is definitely not meant to make us happy but rather sacrifice our wellbeing for that of another individual.

    Humans are constantly trying to cheat nature. Alcohol, opium, cocaine etc make us happy, so happy that we don't care if we starve, if we stink, if we contract a disease.

  • Re:GATTACA (Score:5, Insightful)

    by hackula ( 2596247 ) on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @04:32PM (#41171645)
    Just got married last weekend. Kept things simple with close to zero stress. Saved 20 grand and everyone's sanity. Wife was easy going and chill about everything. Pro tip: if your bride-to-be is freaking the fuck out about flowers, food, or chairs, then she is a psychopath. Do not marry a psychopath! This should go without saying, but somehow it is become the norm. Marry a woman, not a spoiled child.
  • Re:Spoilers (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ColdWetDog ( 752185 ) on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @04:48PM (#41171845) Homepage

    Never eat a place called Mom's.
    Never play poker with a man named Doc.
    Never sleep with a woman with a woman who has more problems than you do.

    That, along with a roll of duct tape, some WD-40, a screwdriver and a hammer will get you pretty far in this world.

  • Re:Wait. What? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by vbraga ( 228124 ) on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @04:54PM (#41171889) Journal

    In my humble experience, the occasional flowers or chocolate box in an unexpected day works as well as a piece of jewellery every few years.

  • Re:Spoilers (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Hatta ( 162192 ) on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @05:48PM (#41172487) Journal

    and work on myself to make myself interesting enough to be worth someone's time

    This is the hard part. I have no idea why someone would be interested in a person. People aren't interesting, ideas are interesting. Having ideas doesn't seem to make one interesting to other people though, except for rare exceptions. I'm lucky enough to have found one, but in general it seems that being an interesting person has more to do with being able to talk big without actually saying anything.

    In fact I found the difference so substantial that I came to suspect the "women are choosers, men are beggars, because evolution" hypothesis was more a just-so story to describe a stable cultural pattern than a real scientific theory.

    If you're interacting with them enough for them to form an opinion, then you're not doing the same experiment I described. It's literally walking up to someone saying hi, and propositioning them.

  • Re:Spoilers (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Daniel Dvorkin ( 106857 ) on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @06:07PM (#41172723) Homepage Journal

    average looking college students onto campus to randomly proposition people of the opposite sex

    "Average looking college students" of both sexes are a pretty attractive group as a whole; they're generally healthy, in their reproductive prime, and have at least enough social status to get into college in the first place. So the experiences of the participants in this study aren't necessarily typical of what people from a demographically broader group would see--and given that the specific ways in which college students are attractive (especially youth and fertility) are generally understood to make up a larger component of women's attractiveness than of men's, I suspect that the results for them female study participants are more biased than those for the male participants.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @06:37PM (#41173047)

    And what about all the guys she fucked before you, that either got laid (or the promise of a lay) for a nice dinner or a free trip or a ride in a nice car or because they made nice money and that promised security for some offspring? Basically, fucking in return for all the things that make you have to worry less about working longer, more, harder, for the rest of your life, and having to provide for yourself? This isn't the case for all women, but to dismiss that it's a driving factor for many (especially historically) is just naive.

    In fact, you were just the chump at the end of that line of fucks that got stuck with the bill of goods having to provider for her for life and be her caretaker. The guys before that just got a nice trade of pussy and head for whatever they had to offer at the time. She was probably WAY more fun back before she settled on boring old poindexter to get hitched to.

  • Great, but... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by aXis100 ( 690904 ) on Wednesday August 29, 2012 @09:49PM (#41174529)

    Have they found the gene that makes them batshit crazy?

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