For men, a mid-life crisis can begin around 40 or 50 years of age and last almost as long. It is sometimes referred to as “man-opause.” However, there is nothing funny about it. This is a serious condition that has both men and women worried. Here are some ways to identify the mid-life crisis and get through it.
It is easy to lose your way, especially when what you thought was once true about yourself is in question. Let’s take a man who is an executive at his job. All of the sudden he wakes up to find that a younger hotshot is reaching for his job. In the mirror, his hair is turning gray. He may look at himself and see a few extra pounds around the middle.
All of these things can give him the wrong impression of himself and lead to trouble. The image in others’ eyes seems to have changed so a man begins to question himself.
What are the symptoms? Take a look at your man. He may be experiencing insomnia, fatigue, depression, foreboding, lack of concentration and focus at work, thoughts of dreams unfulfilled, his own mortality and those of shifting roles in society.
Many men have affairs during midlife crises. Why? Well, the question is not easily answered but it may be like trying to recapture something that they think they have lost. Not only that - there are the big toys like new cars and boats that can make them feel young again.
What can a man do? First, recognize that this is what is going on. Next, talk to your partner. Let them help you through this time. Their love and reassurance of your importance to them can get your feet back on the right track. It is true that the grass is not always greener on the other side, and you don’t want to ruin your marriage, family or life trying to find that out.
Get help. Talk to a family counselor or talk one-on-one. Tell them of your concerns and ask for help with the feelings. Maybe you need to rekindle your relationships and accept the new roles in your life. They are different but that doesn’t mean they are inferior to who you were before.