OMG, I'm totally having a thrisis!

A new buzzword for why being in your mid-30s sucks.


Sarah Hepola
April 7, 2008 5:50PM (UTC)

Whenever I feel down, and overwhelmed by the slings and arrows of being a 33-year-old single woman living in New York, I like to call my mom and complain. I do this because, let's face it, no one else wants to hear my crap.

My mother invariably tells me I am not alone, that many women my age are struggling. If that's true, I say, how come they all seem to have such nice shoes? But my mother's point is that for women, the 30s have long been a time of painful personal reckoning and occasional emptiness and confusion -- which sucks, since I thought your 30s were supposed to be the end to the tumult of your 20s, which was a time of painful personal reckoning but also occasional sex-and-tequila binges. But today's 30-something females sure seem anxious and unhappy, and London's Sunday Times has introduced a new word to describe this phenomenon. From the article:

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"If you're in your mid-thirties, hassled by the dramas of juggling work and family, doubting decisions you've made professionally and personally, panicked by the aging process and dismayed that your years of snogging in nightclubs are behind you, then you're probably in the grip of an early midlife crisis -- otherwise known as a thrisis."

For a moment, I was excited: My bullshit angst finally has its own buzzword!

The "thrisis" doesn't merely extend to women, by the way. Men can have one, too. What causes the thrisis? Oh, something about our accelerated pace of life, an inability to separate work and home. Actually, the story is vague on this (and most) points. And the more I read about the "thrisis," the less it sounded like a social phenomenon and the more it sounded like an empty exercise in getting a new word in the OED.

First, there was the midlife crisis of your 40s. Then there was the quarterlife crisis of your 20s. Now the thrisis? When do we stop generating buzzwords and just admit the reality? Folks, life is hard.


Sarah Hepola

Sarah Hepola is the author of the New York Times bestselling memoir, "Blackout: Remembering the Things I Drank to Forget."

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