Ask the Brains; February/March 2009; Scientific American Mind; by David Almeida; Mark A. W. Andrews; 1 Page(s)
Is it true that people can have a midlife crisis, or is it a myth?
¿Paul Graham, Pleasantville, N.Y.
David Almeida, professor of human development and family studies at Pennsylvania State University, responds:
Many people expect that midlife brings forth inevitable crisis, but that idea is not supported by social science. In fact, only 26 percent of adults older than 40 reported having a crisis, according to a recent study. That is not to say that the middle-aged do not experience challenges and psychological distress, but these feelings tend to be brought on by stressful events, such as health problems or losing a parent¿not by age alone.