If you want another reason to get—or stay—married, here it is.

Married people might be happier than unmarried people, says a new study from Michigan State. But the trick is that happiness develops over time, not right out of the gate. So, are you doomed if you’re not married or don’t plan to be? Absolutely not. This just again proves the importance of maintaining close relationships to stay happier and healthier—married or not.

MORE: The Social Animal