midlife crisis is now affecting people as young as 35, according to British
The study blames a shift in work
culture that means that if men are less than halfway up the career ladder by
their mid-30s, they are unlikely to get to the top – with the average age of a
chief executive now 48, down from 59 a generation ago.
Therefore around 35, excessive work
often collides with young children as well as anxiety over money, mortgages, pensions
and aging parents, in a toxic mix.
More than 2000 people of all ages
were interviewed for the study by UK marriage guidance service Relate.
Those aged from 35 to 44 were the
loneliest, most dissatisfied with their marriage and unhappiest at work.
Twenty-one per cent of the group
said that they felt lonely a lot of the time, compared with 13 per cent of
people aged above 65 — the group traditionally associated with loneliness.
In the younger group 28 per cent
said that they had left a job because of a difficult relationship with a
colleague or boss, the highest in any group. One in five had had depression
because of relationship problems and almost a third wanted to cut their working
hours, again the highest of any group.
The majority of respondents said
that they were having sex between one and three times a week. One in five had
sex less than once a year and 8.3 per cent not at all. Among those aged 45 to
54 one in ten was not having sex at all.
Two in five people were satisfied
with their sex life; one in five said it was “adequate” and one in
ten “disappointing”. Just fewer than eight per cent described their
sex life as “mind-blowing”.
Men and women said the most
annoying thing in their marriage was not being listened to. For women, snoring
was next. For men it was having to see their wife’s “poor choice” of