A few points.
1. Just ignore anyone who rants about millennials etc. They haven't thought it through. Better yet. OK boomer facts.
-Millennials are the most educated generation in American history—and also the most broke.
-Millennials hold just 3 percent of American wealth. When they were the same age, Boomers held 21 percent.
-The average older Millennial has $15,000 in student loan debt. The average Boomer at the same age? Just $2,300 in today’s dollars.
-Millennials are paying almost 40 percent more for their first homes than Boomers did.
-American families spend twice as much on healthcare now than they did when Boomers were young parents.
Filipovic shows that Millennials are not the avocado-toast-eating snowflakes of Boomer outrage fantasies. But they are the first American generation that will do worse than their parents. “OK, Boomer” isn’t just a sarcastic dismissal—it’s a recognition that Millennials are in crisis, and that Boomer voters, bankers, and policy makers are responsible. Filipovic goes beyond the meme, upending dated assumptions with revelatory data and revealing portraits of young people delaying adulthood to pay down debt, obsessed with “wellness” because they can’t afford real healthcare, and struggling to #hustle in the precarious gig economy.
(think another poster
referred to it as a ponzi scheme earlier - that's a good way of looking at it.)
2. Some research suggests there are potentially pro-social elements to suicidal behaviour in certain groups (like suicide to help the group over yourself.) But I can't find the thing I was reading ages ago now.
Prosocial behaviors, defined as voluntary behaviors intended to benefit others, are central to the formation and maintenance of healthy interpersonal relationships, and for integration into society . They are viewed as virtues in many cultures and include altruism, reciprocity and cooperation. Gender differences in prosocial behaviors have been well characterized. For example, women display greater and more frequent generosity and altruistic behavior than men –. Growing evidence supports that these gender differences in behavior are linked to sex hormones , .
Depression affects 10–15% of adults in the US and 350 million worldwide . Patients with major depression frequently experience impaired social functioning, defined as an individual’s ability to perform and fulfill normal social roles . The interaction between depression and prosocial behavior is unclear, at least partly because of the methodological challenge to establish causality and its directionality. Prosociality has been suggested to promote healthy development when appropriately regulated, but to increase the risk for psychopathology when overly low or high . Whereas low prosocial behavior is associated with antisocial traits , high prosocial orientation may lead to over concern for others and high anxiety . For instance, the differential gender rates for depression have been associated with preadolescent differences in prosociality associated with empathy and compliance . Depression has also been associated with increased altruism and decreased self-centeredness, which can be explained by feelings of worthlessness, anxiety, and submissive behavior , leading to situations in which the depressed person is taken advantage of by others. On the other hand, depression can be seen as a state of increased anhedonia and self-centeredness , in which a person is unable to love him or herself and, as corollary, unable to care for somebody else. In contrast, it has been proposed that prosocial behaviors play a protective role against mood and anxiety disorders , . Likewise, suicide has been seen as the product of both altruistic impetus (i.e., to spare my family or for the greater good of the community), and egoistic motivation (associated with low social integration) .
The purpose of the current study is to examine the impact of depression on prosocial behavior using a well validated behavioral economic tool: the Trust Game , , which involves a sequential economic exchange between two parties. We sought to extend previous investigations of depression by interrogating the impact of gender on the differences in prosocial behavior in depressed patients. Given the interaction of depression and hypothalamus function and the evidence that gonadal hormones mediate prosocial behaviors, we hypothesized that gender has an influence on the expression of prosocial behavior, which is reversed in depressed subjects.
The 89 participants comprised four study groups: depressed women, depressed men, healthy women and healthy men (n = 16–36). Depressed men exhibited reciprocity more frequently than healthy men. Depression induced an inversion of the gender-specific pattern of self-centered behavior. Suicidal ideation was associated with increased reciprocity behavior in both genders, and enhancement of the effect of depression on gender-specific self-centered behavior.
Depression, particularly suicidal ideation, is associated with reversal of gender-specific patterns of prosocial behavior, suggesting abnormalities in sexual hormones regulation. This explanation is supported by known abnormalities in the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal and hypothalamus-pituitary-gonadal axes found in depression.
We confirmed and expanded gender differences in prosocial behavior in healthy individuals. Depression increased reciprocity behavior in depressed men while increasing self-centered behavior in depressed women. The presence of SI enhanced the effects of depression on self-centered behavior in both genders. Social stress and anxiety in depressed male patients are likely drivers of an exaggerated need to accommodate to others. The pattern of gender-specific changes in social behavior in depressed suicidal patients is suggestive of abnormalities in GnRH secretion and a hypogonadal state. Understanding gender differences in depression may facilitate the design of more efficacious treatments. Further prospective and longitudinal studies are warranted to better confirm our findings, and to relate clinical outcomes to HPA dysfunction.
(so basically according to research depression is associated with more selfishness in women, but less selfishness in men, but suicidal ideation is associated with increased reciprocity behaviour in both.)