Another New York Times article from yesterday, this one requiring link registration: Happy People Aren't Very Nice.
Among the many interesting tidbits in this magazine piece, I learned that women grow less happy as they age.
My two grandmothers were bitter, angry, critical women. This did grow worse with age. I vowed early on that no matter what, I would not turn out that way.
It is said that women evaluate themselves on the quality of their relationships and men on the quality of their work life. If that's true, I can see why women might tend to pile up a burden of unhappiness over time.
Women seem to take on the pain of reproductive loss more acutely than men, and whether it is abortion or miscarriage, those losses often go ungrieved and unsupported by those around us.
Then there are all the other relational losses that accrue over the course of a long life--deaths of loved ones, chronic dissatisfaction in the key relationships of our lives (with our spouses, adult children, other relatives--problems that are all so sadly common), falling out with this or that friend, neighbor, or fellow church member.
Well, God willing, what I want to be is a sweet little old lady with rosy cheeks, an understanding heart, and a kind word for those in pain.