How volunteering can stave off depression

posted by wherehaveyoubean

How volunteering can stave off depression

“Is everybody happy?” Walter Matthau in that wonderful film The Odd Couple yells raucously and rhetorically on re-entering a room that only minutes before he had exited, leaving his flatmate Jack Lemmon chatting up a couple of sure things. But, to his amazement, both the mate and the dates are now in floods of tears as they contemplate the bitter hand that Destiny has dealt them.

That’s what it feels like being a middle-aged broad in the 21st century. Lorraine Kelly is telling us in her minxily reassuring burr that 40 is the new 30; the dirty doctors are sniggering that you’re having the best sex ever; your starter marriages are done and dusted, your debts — of honour and of money — are cleared; and the blessed benediction of infertility is just around the corner. The joint is jumping, you nip out to buy a nice bottle of bubbly — but on bouncing back into the revels, you find your assembled guests in a teary mess. Because, according to the admittedly sketchy-sounding “NHS Information Centre”, a heck of a lot of middle-aged women are suffering from depression or anxiety: 21.5%, up from 19.1% in 1993. read more

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