... is shaped like a U, according to this article (a lot of other research says this as well).
On the global measure, people start out at age 18 feeling pretty good about themselves, and then, apparently, life begins to throw curve balls. They feel worse and worse until they hit 50. At that point, there is a sharp reversal, and people keep getting happier as they age. By the time they are 85, they are even more satisfied with themselves than they were at 18.Talk about counterintuitive! As you get married, have kids, rise in your career, shouldn't you be getting happier and happier? But on average, it's not so. I can't wait until I'm drooling and decrepit. That's when I'm going to be really, really happy.