Although I must say, all people who I know who have had macs in the past, have never reported it breaking down.
I've used and owned Macs in the past. As with all manufacturers, quality results vary between models. Many of Apple's machines were not built or designed by Apple, and as a result, are OK.
However, I'd like you to look around and see how many 7 year old Macs you see out there that have faced any kind of heavy use. (Any machine will endure a decade of very light use.)
Even more, my beef with Apple is not the quality of their hardware -- which I have seen is often a product of their shoddy design as a result of business decisions, not technical ones -- but their inconsistency as a company and their corrupt business model of selling hipster-friendly, pseudo-functional computers and then claiming they are a cultural trend. Have you ever noticed how Apple users are reluctant to criticize Apple for anything? How even when their machines fail, they're sure the solution is more hardware? How they pay for new machines with greater frequency than PC users because Macs have, for 20 years now, not been upgradable for under the cost of a new machine?
It's a neurotic company selling an identity to neurotic people. That alone is a big problem. Secondary problem: they have no consistent strategy. This means backward compatibility is not good, nor is stability of the operating system, nor is stability of the hardware. They invent a new paradigm every fifteen minutes in order to maintain the appearance of being cutting edge -- but in technical terms, it's the exact same equipment as a Dell (built in most cases by the same people who built it for Dell).
If you think Macintosh is better, you fell for the advertising.
I can't say I'm blown away by Dell, HP or others. You'd do better to build a whitebox and use good components -- at this point, it's now more expensive than buying an off-the-shelf HP or Dell, but you get a better, faster, more stable machine (and save a few hours deleting junkware from it).
I think it's fair to say that most Mac users don't push their machines. Macs are very user friendly, and most people generally use them to surf the net and jerk off to porn. Not exactly extensive usage, so I will concede that. I just think that completely writing off Macintosh as garbage is wrong. The Mac OS is much more secure and less buggy than Windows. No wonder the Military switched to the Mac OS.
I do agree with you that building your own machine is the way to go.
And again, I don't think Macintosh is better due to the advertising, I believe this because I work in the industry, and deal with both PC's and Macs on a daily basis.