Mid life crisis or experience usually happens between the age of 40 and 42 and has been found to be the unhappiest period in any couple’s life. A group of Melbourne based researchers have led a multi-nation study tracking the happiness levels in the first five decades in any couple’s life.
The study which was conducted on more than 350,000 men and women from Australia, Britain and Germany. It found that the happiness levels followed a U shaped curve, with the peaks at the beginning and the end of their married life and the lowest in the forties, between 40 and 45 years.
It is not for the first time that studies have laid bare the lack of vigor and increased unhappiness in the period dubbed as the dangerous forties. However what is interesting in the study is the ebbing of happiness starts immediately after the start of married life and reaches its nadir in the forties before it starts to peak in the 60’s and 70’s. The period between 40 to 42 years was labeled as the most dangerous period in any couple’s married life.
Lead researcher Dr Terence Cheng, from the University of Melbourne’s Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, said it hit bottom at ages 40 to 42. ”According to our results, things then start to pick up,”
Dr Cheng said that the study did not focus on the causes of this unhappiness during the period but suggested that it could be caused by career compulsions and increased family expectations.