“How does one learn to laugh after a life thinking fun is somehow bad? I trace my humor impairment back to my childhood. My mom used to say, “The Quaker meeting has begun, no more laughter, no more fun. If you dare to crack a smile, you must walk half a mile.” Luckily have put myself around people who understand humor.
My sole friend from college (sixties) fell into a deep depression and tried to end her life. Bad meds made it even worse. I am happy to report she is recovering. Another friend, recently diagnosed with incurable cancer, kept me in stitches when I visited her. Chemistry certainly plays a role, but as you pointed out, laughter alters chemistry.
“I do laugh, but it’s rarely in the bosom of my family. I mostly try to be humorous and make others laugh, sometimes in my capacity as a mom, sometimes as a Red Hat queen (we are all about fun, we women over 50.)