It’s miserable to be middle-aged, according to a new study of two million people in 80 countries around the world. How can I say DUH loud enough?
The researchers examined data on depression, anxiety and general mental health, and found that well-being bottoms out at around age 48 ½, on average. But the lows vary among different countries. “Happiness continues to fall for American men until about age 53.”
I am struck by the poetry of the words ‘happiness continues to fall.’ It’s so true.
The good news is that the sense of well-being tends to go up again after age 60. The stormy part is over, according to this study.
If by ‘stormy part’ they mean the part where you start wanting a face lift and you’re thinking about shit like bone density and why you can’t read the fine print even with your glasses on, I’m glad to know it passes. I assume the part where you don’t even know whether you have to pee or not also passes, along with the loss of your memory and your ability to bite into an apple without dreading a dental emergency.
Old age is probably very nice if the only other prospect is death. A recent government report revealed that suicide among the middle-aged has risen twenty per cent since 1999. I predict it will keep rising. Middle age is torture. There is nothing good about it. But everyone who decides to stick around will find that life isn’t nearly long enough, not when you still want to figure stuff out.
If I can make it to 70, I plan to be one happy old bag. I’ll probably dress like Cher, since that’s where I’m heading already. And I’ll taunt those 50 year olds without mercy!