Economist Andrew Oswald of the University of Warwick, England is a co-author of the paper the findings came from.
Reuters reports that the 58-year-old said a "burst of madness" inspired his and his colleagues' decision to see whether creatures without career prospects, financial woes and marriages could still hit an emotional low in middle age.
In a study that assessed 151 chimps in Japan, as well as a significant amount in the US, Australia, Canada and Singapore, a four-item questionnaire was used to look at the level of contentment, with areas such as social interaction.
All three groups of apes experienced a mid-life crisis: a U-shaped contentment curve with the nadir at ages 28, 27 and 35, respectively, comparable to human ages of 45 to 50.
Oswald puts the mid-point plunge down to the possibility that an ape may feel existential despair, upon realising they may never be the alpha male or female.
Yet, he is positive on what the findings mean for humans having a hard time.
"By knowing our results, people might be gentler on themselves [when they experience a mid-life crisis]," Oswald said. "Knowing that it's biological, they'll realise that if they can just hang on they'll likely come out the other side."
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