Is My Husband Having a Midlife Crisis?
Aging is a hard thing for many people to face and for some, accepting that they are reaching midlife and no longer the seemingly-invincible person that they were in their younger years causes them to act out. Many men in their 30s through 60s struggle with a midlife crisis and it can be disastrous for their relationships and wreak havoc on everyone around them. If thing suddenly have changed with your spouse, here are some of the signs that you may be dealing with your husband’s midlife crisis.
Sudden New Interests
For many men, hanging on to their sense of adventure and excitement is a major factor of a midlife crisis. They might want to take part in more extreme sports and activities or show interest in youthful endeavors with sporty, expensive cars or boats. Others may suddenly show renewed interest in social activities or going out to bars and clubs.
Attempting to Relive His Youth
Other men may pick up old hobbies and habits in an attempt to prove their youthfulness. Your former basketball star might suddenly spend the weekends playing pickup games with guys half his age. The man who gave up smoking or drinking may suddenly become a party person. Even more dangerous to marriages is the man who decides to relive his youth by seeking the attention of younger women.
Indecisiveness About the Direction of His Life
By middle age, most people have comfortably settled into the career and family life that they have worked for throughout their lives. Those in midlife crisis, may suddenly begin to question all of the choices that they have made thus far. They may want to find a new job, consider a new relationship, or make other drastic changes to their lives.
Unusual Development of a Mean Streak
For some men, all of this confusion, stress, and depression that has descended upon them in middle age can cause them to lash out. A previously level-headed husband can erupt at a moment’s notice. They may develop narcissistic tendencies and might treat their spouse and family in a verbally or emotionally abusive manner.
Many men in midlife crisis recognize that they are acting differently than normal or that they are engaging in things that they don’t wish their spouses to find out. They may suddenly become secretive, hiding purchases, lying about their whereabouts, or making up stories to explain away things that their spouses pick up on.
What Should You Do?
If the behaviors that your spouse is exhibiting aren’t dangerous or hurtful, it might be as simple as letting them see things through. Bite your nails while they try bungee jumping or skydiving and hope that the phase passes quickly.
However, if your spouse’s midlife crisis is causing you or your family emotional pain, it is important to seek help.
Reach out to a marriage counselor and encourage your spouse to join you. If they refuse, attend alone and get professional advice as to the actions that you can take to help him get through this period without causing unnecessary hurt.
A midlife crisis can take on many forms. When you recognize it for what it is, you are more likely to be able to help your husband through this phase and come out on the other side with your relationship firmly intact.