Grumpy old men not so grumpy, study shows

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Wednesday, March 18, 2015

EVANSTON, Ill. (WLS) -- Despite the Hollywood stereotype, old men aren't that grumpy, according to a study by Northwestern University. Instead, trust increases with age, researchers said, and that can contribute to overall well-being.

"When we think of old age, we often think of decline and loss," said study co-author Claudia Haase, an assistant professor of Human Development and Social Policy at Northwestern's School of Education and Social Policy, through a statement released by the school.

Northwestern worked with the University at Buffalo on the two, large-scale studies. In one study, the researchers looked at 197,888 individuals from 83 countries. In the other they studied 1,230 people in the U.S. and found they became more trusting as they aged.

"For Millennials, Generation X, and Baby Boomers alike, levels of trust increase as people get older," said Haase, who directs Northwestern's Life-Span Development Lab, in the statement. "People really seem to be 'growing to trust' as they travel through their adult years."

The studies are published online in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science.