The phrase “midlife crisis” is an increasingly used catch-all phrase used to explain away a person’s bad behavior regardless of their age. The following are a few clues that the man in your life may be heading for, or in the midst of, a midlife crisis.

1) He’s middle-aged.
He is between the ages of 40 and 60, give or take a few years. If he’s in his 20’s or his 70’s, he’s not middle-aged and midlife crisis isn’t the problem regardless of how many other clues may fit his current situation.

2) He’s occasionally impotent.
Aging can lower testosterone levels making it more difficult for him to become sexually aroused. Stress and anxiety as well as undiagnosed illness may also cause impotency.

3) He feels trapped.
He may feel like he is drowning in responsibilities to his family, his employer, or other obligations that are weighing him down without there appearing to be an end in sight.

4) He wants a sportier car.
He may have traded in the family car for a two-seater car for himself without regard to how the family’s transportation needs will be met. If not a sportier car, he may be shopping for a motorcycle or a speedboat, something that’s definitely “not the usual” for him but something that will make him feel younger and appear more in tune with a younger crowd.

5) He wonders “what if” about the past.
He thinks about his “first love” and wonders how much differently his life would have turned out “if.” He might be listening to songs that were popular in his high school or college days or even looking up some of his former classmates (most likely female) through online services.

6) He thinks about death.
Death and dying may be on his mind much of the time. Perhaps a peer, co-worker, or one of his parents has died and jogged him into worrying about his own mortality.

7) He’s concerned about his looks.
He may not have paid particular attention to his physical appearance in years past but lately he’s been complaining that he’s out of shape or that he’s losing his hair or that he needs to get some younger looking clothes. He may now be coloring his hair or begun working out at the gym or started a weight-loss diet.

8) He’s discouraged about his goals.
He feels that life no longer has a purpose or that he isn’t doing anything worthwhile. He can’t see a positive future for himself and feels that nothing he does is accomplishing anything he can feel proud of. Depression can be a major issue for middle-aged men.

9) He’s dissatisfied with his job.
He is dissatisified with his career or his job. He may have been passed over for promotion or he may be concerned that younger men (and women) are advancing into positions that should be his. He might be thinking about quitting his current career and starting something entirely different such as a doctor who quits to sail around the world or a lawyer who quits law to become a wood carver.

10) He’s not interested in sex.
Unfortunately, his lack of interest in sex with you might not always be hormonal or stress related. It could be that he has found someone else who interests him more. Midlife affairs are not uncommon as a man searches for someone who can provide the illusion of youth for him.

© Pat Gaudette. All rights reserved.