6 Signs That Your Spouse Is Having a Midlife Crisis


Think your partner is going through a midlife crisis? It's not all sports cars and new haircuts. A midlife crisis is an emotionally uncomfortable period that people go through between the age of 35 and 65. For many, the crisis presents as a period of existential self-evaluation as one finds themselves at the crossroads between youth and old age, like constantly questioning their life choices or behaviors. For some, this period is a true "crisis," one that causes them to act out of character in various ways, whether through small tweaks to their routine or drastic changes to their personality and beliefs.

What Is a Midlife Crisis?

Midlife crisis refers to a phase in a middle-aged person's life (usually between the ages of 35 to 65) wherein they feel compelled to face and/or reevaluate their mortality, confidence, identity, and accomplishments. The term was first coined in 1965 by psychologist Elliott Jaques.

And while it's easy to believe that a midlife crisis is caused only by a fear of getting older, a midlife crisis is usually triggered by a life-altering event and has more to do with the anxiety of change than it does the dread of aging. In midlife, in particular, we may be faced with a number of major life events—such as divorce, a milestone birthday, the death of a parent, a medical diagnosis, or children moving out of the home—that force us to face our own mortality and assume (sometimes unwittingly) a new identity.

Read on for six signs that your partner is going through a midlife crisis and what you can do to help.

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