Midlife Crisis

Midlife Crisis

A midlife crisis is a transition and challenge for people faces at the middle age, an average age for this crisis is 47, it may commence before midlife, in the mid-thirties, and resolves in the middle forties or fifties. Everyone doesn’t experience this crisis. It is often disputable term as for some any transition can spur an identity crisis, for others the transition to middle age it’s a smooth transition.

Symptoms of midlife crisis

A midlife crisis is not seen as a disease, no list of symptoms is applicable to every person experiencing a midlife crisis. However, a midlife crisis person may have depression anxiety, stress, or frustration related to morality & aging. In order to mask feelings of grief or anxiety in a midlife crisis, they may buy house, new car, have an affair, use drugs or alcohol.

  • Dissatisfied Relationship: Not satisfied in relations, wishes to change the terms& conditions of relationship, loss or excessive interest in sex.
  • Appearance Obsession:  Dressing clothes to give "younger" look, different diets, excessive exercise, or use cosmetics to mask signs of aging.
  • Dissatisfied Career:  Wishes to quit job or avoid responsibilities and feel envious or resentful of youth coworkers.
  • Distressed Emotional: An anger out bursts, feeling of emptiness, challenging religious or moral beliefs, reckless behavior, and emotional turmoil. Stages of midlife crisis

Stages of midlife crisis

Manifestation of Midlife crises exhibited differently for people it lasts from two to seven years. Elizabeth Kübler-Ross. He suggested to six stages of a midlife crisis:
1. Denial. The first sign of a midlife crisis, is a person attempts to deny or fight graying.

2. Anger. In this stage there is feeling of frustration about inability to manage midlife challenges.

3. Replay. Here person attempt to replay on acts like cosmetic surgery, drugs, having an affair, or shirking responsibilities to show being young.

4. Depression. When replay fails, a person goes to anxiety and depression.

5. Withdrawal. During this stage of one distance kith and kin as a coping with their depression.

6. Acceptance. At the end person accepts that they are growing older, and begins seeking meaning in the next stage of life.

Issues and challenges

Midlife crisis and divorce: Midlife crises, may play a role in the decision to divorce as more divorces are happening in age 40 plus. Sixty-six percent of young people report they would rather divorce than be in an unhappy marriage, compared to just 44% of younger people. Reasons of divorce in midlife are:

  •  A wish for happier life, either as a single or with another partner.
  •  Accusing their partner about shattered hope.
  •  Absence of children at home and lack of desire of being together
  •  Loss of feeling, attraction in partner.

How do you know you need counseling/therapy?

One can find out if the need counseling or therapy by checking the following
  • You feel overwhelmed in your day to day life most of the time
  • You want to bring a positive change in your relationship, but you’re unable to do so on your own, you might want to seek counseling.
  • You’re experiencing disturbances in your relationship which impact your day-to-day life like work, social engagement etc.
  • You’re experiencing disturbances which impact your overall wellbeing.
  • You’re experiencing emotions on the extremes. For example you’re either too happy or too angry.
  • You are having difficulty in understanding your own or loved one’s emotions or in making sense of what is going on around you.
  • Feeling disconnected from yourself and your partner.

How therapy can help overcome midlife crisis?

Therapy helps people struggling with the aftermath of trauma, recent or old. Therapist can help people convert a midlife crisis into an opportunity for growth and generatively. Therapy helps people experiencing a midlife crisis in:

  •  Improving relationships with others.
  •  Deciding to stay in marriage or not
  •  Talking about the disappointments, issues and challenges they’ve faced in life.
  •  Deciding on future course of life.
  •  Finding meaning in life’s changes.

How talktoangel can help in midlife crisis?

TalktoAngel is an online mental health counseling platform offering therapies and counseling services to people having midlife crisis, we have qualified certified professional therapist/psychologists who can help you to overcome midlife crisis by identifying your problems, ongoing issues, working on new goals, help you regain, sense of control and establishing better relationship with adult children.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  • A midlife crisis is not diagnosed as mental illness. Opinion is divided on its existence, consider there’s little evidence that such a crisis reliably occurs for most people, few studies indicate that a midlife crisis is not universal across cultures, it also estimated only about 10% of American men experience a midlife crisis. Some researcher considers a midlife crisis as a common developmental milestone but not able to define it. Some considers midlife crises as midlife transitions, which provides the opportunity to evaluate past goals and achievements before moving on to the next stage of life. Similarity of symptoms of a midlife crisis can be seen with those of an adjustment disorder, like immense stress in response to a new life event, such as a move or the death of a loved one. Individual experiencing a midlife crisis may think their experience as real. An individual feels that their symptoms are well-explained by a midlife crisis.
  • Graying brings changes like relationships may end or shift; careers can become more demanding, or not able to live up to a person’s dreams or vision, reality of life, morality, change in roles etc. According to Erik Erikson midlife conflict is between stagnation and generatively. Stagnation fears trigger a midlife crisis, while generatively—giving something to the next generation gives opportunities to resolve the crisis.
  • Research shows that men and women equally have a midlife crisis, it is further reported that 34% of men and 36.1% of women had a midlife crisis. The midlife crises men focus more on costly cars, affairs, and unusual new interests. However, for many men, a midlife crisis is finding meaning and then outward signs of youth. The gender related roles, responsibilities and socialization affect a man experiences a midlife crisis; he may worry about: Others’ perception of his masculinity, Age-related maladies affecting desirability or strength, Success in career and decisions affected relationship with children and other family members.
  • Women experience midlife crisis is colored by gender norms and socialization. They encounter lot of pressure to remain young and beautiful, and worry about partners becoming interested in younger women. The women do more plastic surgeries to overcome crisis or anxiety getting older. Women also experience the same midlife crisis symptoms like concerns about career growth, an aging body, desirability, and relationships. Furthermore, some women impacted by childrearing decisions. Many often women quit working outside the home to rear children, of them regret this choice, feel frustrated by limited career options, or feel less fulfilled as their children grow older. Studies indicate that women are more likely than men to divorce their partners, and pursue divorce at the end of a midlife crisis, as a way to resolve the crisis.


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