Do men really have a midlife crisis?


Quick Answer

According to Kathleen Doheny for WebMD, midlife crises are common among men, but the term may be a bit outdated. Modern psychologists tend to see the life-changing symptoms exhibited among men between the ages of 37 and 50 as part of a normal transitional phase that occurs in conjunction with defining life events, such as parents dying, children leaving the nest or reaching a new decade's birthday.

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Full Answer

Doheny explains that both men and women are likely to experience the urge to make large midlife changes, but men tend to express theirs with a greater sense of urgency. They are also more prone to making rash decisions that can affect their careers or significantly impact the state of their finances. The impetus for change often begins when a man re-evaluates his life and feels the mounting pressure of his age. He may believe that his chance to chase some long-awaited dreams is quickly fading.

For some men, the weight of these emotions leads to depression and can cause a loss of appetite, social withdrawal, thoughts of suicide, consistent hopelessness, irritability, anxiety and health complications that are difficult to heal with conventional treatments. Doheny recommends that men who exhibit signs of depression seek the help of a licensed professional and engage in talk therapy as an outlet to express the flood of emotions that accompany a midlife crisis.

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