The Week (US)

Author of the week


Ada Calhoun

Ada Calhoun is not by nature a complainer, said Samantha Storey in Huffington­Post .com. In mid-2017, when an editor at asked her to write an article about why so many Gen X women felt unhappy, the concept struck her as flimsy. “I was like, ‘Oh yeah, four people in Brooklyn are sad,’” she says. “Quick, someone write a trend story.” But when Calhoun started interviewi­ng other women in their 40s, their worries echoed her own— and helped her understand why she tossed and turned every night. Once the article appeared, hundreds more women wrote to share similar woes—about career, family, self-worth. Calhoun says her new book, Why We Can’t Sleep, has a message for them: “You’re all not crazy. You didn’t imagine that housing costs are really high. You didn’t imagine that you’re facing a much tougher economy than your parents did. It’s not like we just individual­ly failed.”

Progress, too, has created new burdens, said Nicole Economos in The Sydney Morning Herald (Australia). These women were encouraged when young to cultivate ambitions beyond the home. And once they reached adulthood, the concept hardened. “[It] morphed from ‘You can do anything’ to ‘No, you have to do everything,’” says Calhoun. Many Gen X women now find themselves having to pursue careers while caring both for their parents and children. Calhoun felt a similar squeeze last fall, when her father developed Stage 4 lung cancer and a fire destroyed her parents’ home. Calhoun, now 43, believes Why We Can’t Sleep helped her cope. “If I hadn’t done all this research,” she says, “I would be in a much darker place right now.”

 ??  ??
 ??  ??
 ??  ??

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from United States