Note: This is the first of a two-part series.
Dear Neil: How can I determine if my boyfriend is going through a midlife crisis?
Disturbed in Longmont, Colorado
Dear Disturbed: Take this quiz, courtesy of Gay Courter and Pat Gaudette in the book How To Survive Your Husband’s Midlife Crisis (Perigee). How many of the following fits your man?
- He is between 40 and 60 years old
- He is on either side of his 40th or 50th birthday
- He is showing concerns about getting old
- He has bought a more youthful wardrobe
- He is coloring his hair or trying a trendier cut
- He reminisces about his teen years or “when he was younger”
- He listens to romantic songs from his dating years
- He talks about his “first love” and wonders “what if”
- He yearns for a sportier vehicle (or has bought one)
- He doesn’t find enjoyment in the usual leisure-time activities
- He wants to do something adventurously out of character like hang gliding or auto racing
- He’s bored with his life
- He questions the meaning of his life
- He is dissatisfied with his job or career
- He feels trapped by responsibilities or obligations to others
- He has financial problems
- He worries about the future
- He suddenly wants another child
- He is unhappy that the children are grown and on their own
- He has some major health problems
- He has experienced the recent death of a parent, close friend or other family member
- He is frequently nervous and/or irritable
- Uncharacteristically, he is frequently criticizing you or your relationship
- He is not interested in sex
- He feels inadequate
- He says he loves you but isn’t “in love with you”
- He is uncharacteristically abusive
- He is recently divorced
- He worries about everything to excess
- His sleeping habits have changed
- He drinks more or is doing more mood altering drugs
- He feels that life no longer has any purpose
- He is concerned about death and dying
- He rewrites what you considered a good relationship by stating “We were never happy”
- He wants what he can’t have and doesn’t want whatever he knows he can have
- He finds himself thinking “responsibility bad, spontaneity good”
Scoring: 0-7 indicates normal midlife emotions.
8-15 suggests more serious midlife issues.
16 or more indicates that a crisis is on the immediate horizon.
I will continue this discussion in next week’s column.
I would really like to know if my husband is having a midlife crisis? He is not him self and he keeps saying he loves me but is not in love with me anymore, I’m not the person he married. If it is a midlife crisis how do I know what stage he is in I can’t find anything on what stage is he in of a midlife crisis. Please help I’m so lost and hurt. I would get help but can’t afford it. Thanks Samantha Summers.
I strongly recommend the book How to Survive Your Husband’s Midlife Crisis. It helped me a lot. I am still in pain but each day gets easier.