"What is midlife crisis? Am I having one?"

"What is midlife crisis? Am I having one?" ichhori.com

 "What is midlife crisis? Am I having one?"

People who are going through a midlife crisis are assumed to be dealing with their own mortality and, at some point in their lives, they abandon some of their obligations in favour of having fun. Depression, guilt, and anxiety are regarded to be linked to ageing. And a midlife crisis is a period in people's lives when they are trying to come to grips with the idea that they are halfway through their lives. However, the emotional anguish that some people go through in their forties and fifties does not always result in substantial lifestyle changes that include a yearning to be young again.

A midlife crisis isn't a psychological condition in and of itself, but it is a difficult phase of transition between the ages of 40 and 55, however the timing of midlife crises varies. Men and women have distinct responses to midlife crises. A midlife crisis occurs when a person's perception of themselves and their lives as they are against what they want them to be. It is caused by a desire to alter one's identity. Although it can co-occur with depression, a midlife crisis is a solely psychological condition.

A midlife crisis does not affect everyone. In a survey, approximately 26% of respondents said they were going through a midlife crisis. However, the majority of poll respondents stated that their midlife crisis occurred before the age of 40 or after the age of 50. The vast majority of persons who claim they suffered a midlife crisis believe it was caused by a major event rather than their age. Divorce, job loss, loss of a loved one, or relocation were among the factors that caused the crisis.

Signs of having a midlife crisis

What constitutes a midlife crisis is a topic of debate among researchers. Much of the research is based on people's responses to questions regarding whether or not they've had a midlife crisis. Of course, what one person considers a midlife crisis may not be the same as what another person considers a crisis. While it's common to associate a midlife crisis with a dread of mortality or a wish to be young again, the feelings felt during a midlife crisis may be similar to those felt during any other form of life crisis.

The signs and symptoms of a midlife crisis differ greatly from person to person. The most typical age range for a midlife crisis is 35 to 55, with notable gender differences. Many of the symptoms of a midlife crisis and depression are similar.

An emotional crisis is defined as "a clear and abrupt change in behaviour," according to the American Psychological Association. The following are some examples of behavioural changes:

  • Personal hygiene is neglected.
  • Sleeping patterns have shifted dramatically.
  • Weight gain or loss
  • Increased anger, irritability, despair, or anxiousness.
  • Withdrawal from daily activities or relationships

Men and women both experience the following signs of a midlife crisis:

  • Feeling unsatisfied with your life?
  • Chronic reminiscence about the past, intense emotions of nostalgia
  • Boredom, emptiness, and a feeling of meaninglessness
  • Actions that are impulsive and often rash
  • Changes in behaviour and appearance that are dramatic
  • Infidelity in the marriage or frequent thoughts of infidelity
  • Constantly comparing oneself to those who appear to be happier or more pleased than oneself
  • Regrettably strong feelings

Midlife crisis in men

Men may also experience a loss of sexual desire, erectile problems, testosterone insufficiency, and feelings of sadness. In opposed to full-blown depressive disorders, sadness in a midlife crisis is usually far less intense.

It's worth noting that people's symptoms differ greatly from one another. Some people exhibit only one or two of the traits, while others exhibit all of them.

Women and midlife crisis

Women in midlife crises exhibit many of the same symptoms as males, with the exception that they are more tearful and have less rage and irritation. Women typically undergo midlife crises around the same time as they are approaching menopause, which has a significant impact on their midlife experiences.

Gaining or losing weight

Midlife crises and depression have a lot of common traits (Jennifer Wickham). Weight gain or loss is also one of the many disruptive elements that can signal a person is undergoing an emotional crisis, according to the American Psychological Association.

Becoming Apathetic

It could be a symptom of an impending emotional crisis — and even a mid-life crisis — if you suddenly lose interest or passion for things you used to enjoy. Apathy adds a more challenging aspect to a midlife crisis since it might impede a person's willingness to help themselves or seek help (Yocheved Golani).

Feeling inadequate

A person's mortality and the fact that 'half' of their life is over is often confronted in their early forties to early fifties. As a result, they strive to make meaning of their current situation, as well as how it links to their past and future. This is an excellent spot to re-evaluate your ambitions and make peace with your past. The question of "Am I Enough?" is frequently at the forefront of this time of life. When someone is unable to answer the question in an open and vulnerable manner, confusion might ensue. As a result of this chaotic mentality, people may make decisions based on impulse and a need to cope or numb themselves. (Dr. Mayfield)

Making rash decisions

It's probable that you've come to some substantial conclusions regarding the state of your life as a result of your soul searching. When someone makes an impulsive decision based on these feelings, there is a risk that it will not lead to therapeutic benefits. Acting without considering the long-term consequences can take you down a path of regret. In general, it's a denial of reality. (Dr. Ludwig)

How to manage midlife crisis symptoms

Coping with a midlife crisis is difficult since one's feelings are shouting at them that something is wrong and has to be fixed right away. People are driven to make poor, even terrible decisions by a sense of urgency, a sense that time is running out. It's critical to take things slowly.

  • Make no rash choices. Making a change just to say you've done something isn't a sensible strategy. The bigger the decision, the more consideration it needs.
  •  Speak with someone. Men and women in their forties and fifties frequently feel lonely and isolated. Find someone to confide in, and if you don't know anyone, seek professional help from a mental health specialist.
  • Make contact with reality. Keep in mind that your feelings aren't always anchored in reality. Emotions are real, but they may be the result of a faulty perception of events. Obtain objective feedback on your problem.
  • Kindness is important. Kindness to yourself and others is important. If you've considered ending or modifying a significant relationship and decided to do so after some contemplation, do it with kindness. If you're quitting your job to return to school, think about how you'll tell your family and friends. Whatever you choose, keep in mind that you're always a part of a web of relationships.

However, not everything is horrible. Curiosity, according to a 2016 study published in the International Journal of Behavioral Development, is an advantage of the midlife crisis. Researchers discovered that those going through a crisis, whether it was a quarter-life or a midlife crisis, had increased interest about themselves and the world around them. Participants were more open to new ideas as a result of their anxiety and uncertainty, which could lead to fresh insights and creative solutions. This interest could lead to new breakthroughs or opportunities, which could be a silver lining amid a disaster.


1. https://www.womansday.com/health-fitness/wellness/g2966/signs-of-midlife-crisis-in-a-woman/

2. https://neurospatms.com/signs-you-are-experiencing-depression-vs-a-midlife-crisis/

3. https://www.verywellmind.com/what-are-the-signs-of-a-midlife-crisis-4175827#:~:text=People%20who%20are%20having%20a,picture%20mistresses%20and%20sports%20cars.

4. https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbescoachescouncil/2017/08/31/15-signs-youve-hit-your-mid-life-crisis-and-what-to-do-about-it/?sh=5b5d50b3573c

5. https://www.cadabamshospitals.com/midlife-crisis-in-women/

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