New research has found that life satisfaction gradually declines from early adulthood – reaching its lowest point in our early 40s and then rising again when we’re about 70.
So all we need to do is stave off any debilitating diseases or death between the ages of 40 and 70 (some might say the optimum period for these events) – battle through underfunded social care support – and then it’s all plain sailing.
We can look forward to our final years with a spring in our step and a rose between our false teeth.
So that’s the good news.
There is light at the end of the tunnel for those of us run ragged by midlife responsibilities – crushed by the administrative demands of mortgages and small children – dried out old husks who can’t remember nouns – which I’m convinced all came out of me during the birth of my first child (whose name escapes me).
The bad news is that we’re not allowed to blame our babies and toddlers (who are obviously to blame).
According to a forthcoming paper which followed 50,000 adults in Britain Australia and Germany – ‘The existence of this midlife nadir is not because of the presence of young children in the household. Adjusting for the number and the ages of any dependent offspring leaves the pattern unchanged’.
The authors are all leading economists – but they’ve clearly never met any small children – let alone lived with them.
Our 40s are when we work hardest – while at the same time caring for young children and often elderly parents too.
Now we have proof at last that the midlife crisis is real and that happiness is U-shaped – like the back of a toilet – a German submarine boat – or the letter U.