Middle age no picnic for women

November 13, 2006

Surveys by Washington researchers indicate there are good reasons middle-aged women in the United States are not as happy as the rest of the population.

Independent pollsters Pursuant Inc. found that from the mid-30s to the mid-50s, U.S. women are stressed out trying to meet the needs of aging parents and other family members, USA Today reported.

Worrying about an elderly relative's health and not having enough time for others is likely to result in depression, the study said.

Of more than 1,100 women who have at least one living parent, only approximately 20 percent indicated they were happy compared to 34 percent for the U.S. population overall.

The poll of women aged 35 to 54 was commissioned by the New York Academy of Medicine and the National Association of Social Workers.

Its bleak conclusions are no surprise to social worker Deb Rubenstein who counsels "sandwich generation" women in Washington.

Typically when emergencies with aging parents hit, "these women already have their plates 110 percent full," Rubenstein told USA Today.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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