How can we possibly be so miserably unhappy? For a nation that supposedly “has it all”, we sure are depressed.
In America today, suicide rates are soaring, antidepressant use is skyrocketing and virtually every new survey that comes out shows that we are deeply dissatisfied about something. But we live at a time when there are more things to enjoy than ever before.
When I was growing up there was only a handful of television channels to choose from, but now there are hundreds. We have more movies than we could ever possibly watch, more books than we could ever possibly read, and the greatest video games ever made are at our fingertips. With all of the entertainment that surrounds us, you would think that Americans would be happier than ever before, and yet we continue to become even more depressed. Everywhere I go, I see people that look like they have had the life completely sucked out of them.
So why is this happening? The following are 21 signs that Americans are the unhappiest people in the entire world…
#1 A scientific study that was just released found that U.S. adults are becoming less happy over the years…
“Adults over 30 are less happy than their predecessors,” concludes a study published online Thursday in the journal Social Psychology and Personality Science, which examined happiness data from more than 50,000 adults, gleaned from the General Social Survey, carried out by NORC at the University of Chicago, a nonpartisan, independent research organization, which has collected information about American adults since 1972.
From 2010 to 2014, adults over 30 had an average happiness score of just 2.18, compared with 2.24 a decade ago. That’s significant considering happiness scores were measured on a tiny scale from just 1 to 3, with 1 being “not too happy” and 3 being “very happy.”
#2 Young people are also becoming increasingly depressed. Just check out what one study conducted at San Diego State University discovered…
Americans are more depressed now than they have been in decades, a recent study has found. San Diego State University (SDSU) psychology professor Jean M. Twenge analyzed data from nearly 7 million adolescents and adults from across the country and found that more people reported symptoms of depression — including sleeplessness and trouble concentrating — compared to the 1980s.
Twenge’s findings show that teenagers in the 2010s experience memory trouble 38 percent more often than their 1980s counterparts. Teens are also 74 percent more likely to have trouble sleeping and twice as likely to see a professional for mental health issues. College students in the study reported feeling overwhelmed by academic and personal demands 50 percent more often than their 1980s counterparts.
#4 A different survey found that 70 percent of all Americans do not “feel engaged or inspired at their jobs”.
#5 One survey of 50-year-old men in the U.S. found that only 12 percent of them said that they were “very happy”.
#6 The number of Americans diagnosed with depression increases by about 20 percent each year.
#7 According to the New York Times, more than 30 million Americans take antidepressants.
#8 Doctors in the United States write more than 250 million prescriptions for antidepressants each year.
#9 The rate of antidepressant use among middle aged women is far higher than for the population as a whole. It is hard to believe, but right now one out of every four women in their 40s and 50s is taking an antidepressant medication.
#10 Compared to children in Europe, children in the United States are three times more likely to be prescribed antidepressants.
#11 In America today, there are 60 million people that abuse alcohol and there are 22 million people that use illegal drugs.
#12 America has the highest rate of illegal drug use on the entire planet.
#13 One recent poll found that 71 percent of Americans are dissatisfied with the direction that things are going in this country.
#14 America has the highest divorce rate in the world by a wide margin.
#15 America has the highest percentage of one person households on the entire planet.
#16 100 years ago, 4.52 people were living in the average U.S. household, but now the average U.S. household only consists of 2.59 people.
#18 The suicide rate in the United States is now the highest that it has been in 25 years.
#19 According to one absolutely shocking study, 22 military veterans kill themselves in the United States every single day.
#20 The suicide rate for Americans between the ages of 35 and 64 rose by close to 30 percent between 1999 and 2010. The number of Americans that are killed by suicide now exceeds the number of Americans that die as a result of automobile accidents every year.
#21 The rate of suicide is highest during the holidays that come at the end of the year, and 45 percent of all Americans say that they dread the Christmas season. The following comes from a Psychology Today article…
We are told that Christmas, for Christians, should be the happiest time of year, an opportunity to be joyful and grateful with family, friends and colleagues. Yet, according to the National Institute of Health, Christmas is the time of year that people experience the highest incidence of depression. Hospitals and police forces report the highest incidences of suicide and attempted suicide. Psychiatrists, psychologists and other mental health professionals report a significant increase in patients complaining about depression. One North American survey reported that 45% of respondents dreaded the festive season.
So why in the world is this happening?
We have one of the highest standards of living in the world and we are surrounded by massive amounts of entertainment.
Yet we are severely depressed.
And during the “happiest time of the year” we get even more depressed.
Clearly something has gone very wrong.
Even more entertainment is not going to fix us, and neither will more drugging.