Midlife Crisis In Women

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Midlife Crisis In Women

Life is a cycle of seasons, and the change between seasons can be alarming. There can often be minor hiccups in lifestyle, which are soon resolved. But when they persist, a crisis occurs. Midlife is a period recognized as a time of potential crisis.

Midlife sets in somewhere between the late 30s and late 40s. This is different from the premenopausal years that occur later. By the 1900s, only 10% of women reached middle age. Their roles were well defined as wife, mother, domestic labor within the limited sphere of home and family. A midlife crisis is not unheard of.

However, the 20th century saw an incredible lengthening of life expectancy, with women living well into their 7th or 8th decades. So, around age 40 or so, when the business of childbearing is over, and children begin to assert their independence, women face a widening void in life. Husbands may also be going through their own mid-life crisis and are like irritable hedgehogs. Or role reversal, they become overly dependent on their spouse. Women start feeling trapped.

A woman may feel that life is passing her by. “Who am I?” He wonders “Does my life count for anything?” An indescribable loneliness overcomes him as if he has no real identity. Aware of her fading beauty and strength, she sinks into depression. This feeling of worthlessness is compounded when there is marital dissatisfaction. The 20th century saw revolutionary changes in every aspect of life. Education, employment outside the home, decline of the joint family system, migration to the impersonal environment of cities, changing sex roles, women’s liberation movements, youth culture and rapid advances in science and technology – these have created a form of insecurity. traditional woman. As she tries to keep up with the changing times, stress becomes her part.

It is against this background that midlife crisis becomes important. Whether single, married or widowed, about two-thirds of women go through this stage. A career oriented spinster in the management hierarchy suddenly decides that she can no longer live alone. He pictures being confined to some home for the elderly, and the prospect terrifies him. So he frantically advertises in newspapers for a suitable life partner, and may irrationally choose an unwanted partner or enter into a live-in relationship. A sober middle-aged widow may decide to give herself a new image. She can visit a beautician to style her hair, pluck her eyebrows, and iron out her wrinkles with Botox. She may even start using heavy make-up and clothing like a teenager. She may flirt annoyingly with eligible men or have an affair with someone younger than her son. People notice, gossip and snigger, but the woman throws propriety to the wind and is shameless about her behavior.

A spinster with unfulfilled maternal desires may offer to marry or ‘rent her womb’. Some psychologists say that the midlife crisis is just a convenient excuse for irresponsible behavior. But it could be argued that if that were the case, why wait until middle age to indulge? The Middle Ages is merely a passing phase, and it is not something to be feared but something to be welcomed. Lack of preparation usually leads to crisis. EM Blaicklock says “Middle age is the time when the fruits of life begin to ripen.”

Be prepared for this. It is time to take stock of one’s self and examine one’s lifestyle. One needs to identify the factors that can contribute to a crisis and deal with them individually. What is the fear of losing youth, sex appeal and beauty? Are a few gray strands, or sagging breasts or weight gain causing panic? “Feeling good and looking good is related to the balance between mind and body,” says a psychiatrist. And Longfellow assures us that “age is no less opportunity than youth, though in another garb.”

Exercise, a balanced diet, relaxation, and a general interest in the world around will bring back the glow to a middle-aged appearance.

Has the marital relationship become boring? Then one has to make more effort to change it. A little more loving, communication and caring can go a long way to fixing things. The husband may also be going through a mid-life crisis and may be disinterested or unable to express his feelings. A woman should therefore communicate her needs directly and specifically verbally, conveying to him that she is going through a difficult phase and wants his understanding and love. A good husband will not only support his wife emotionally, but also give her the space she needs to develop her own values. A woman suddenly widowed in middle age may experience increased depression. Or he may rush into a relationship that is unwise under pressure.

A woman who has spent the best years of her life being an ideal mother, who finds identity and fulfillment in her children, the realization that they no longer need her, and a wide generational gap growing between them, makes her. Feeling marginalized and useless. Midlife is a time when one’s health becomes weak. Diseases like obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, need for food restriction, medication, exercise make him aware of his mortality. He starts to think about his situation and wallows in self pity. Dwindling financial resources and the austerity brought by retirement also threaten his peace of mind.

All of these stress factors have a snowballing effect, which can undermine a woman’s self-confidence and bring about altered behavior such as depression, irritability, irrational behavior, assertiveness or abnormal sexual interest. In fact, this stage is like going through a ‘second mental adolescence’.

Anticipation and preparation for middle age can make the transition smooth. Life does not end at that stage. Floyd and Thatcher said, “Middle Ages is a time of discovery, not stagnation. It is a time ripe for new beginnings—a threshold to a richly stimulating future. The years and beyond can be the best half of life.” Life has different seasons. Every season a woman has to reassess her values ​​from different perspectives. Whether single, married or widowed, she must blossom into her own identity, and not be a rubber stamp for her husband or a doormat for her children; He should not allow himself to be exploited even by his own family. He also needs to be a decision maker and assert himself when needed.

Hobbies and new interests make life interesting. “Unlock your creativity,” exhorts Anne Morrow Lindbergh Music, reading, traveling, painting are mood elevators.

Good friends are an asset in difficult times. They act as confidants or sounding boards when one needs to get something off one’s chest. They lend support in times of stress and frustration. Groups like “Emotions Anonymous” help its members to open up and talk about their problems. They learn from each other’s experiences and mutually help each other, to redefine their ideas and values. They become happy and confident. Artificial props like drugs and alcohol are not the answer, nor is extramarital affairs a solution. This can only lead to feelings of guilt that are hard to shake off.

Husbands and children must realize that their supportive love can work magic to overcome midlife crises. But until a woman verbalizes her needs and fears, they don’t know.

Finding time for introspection, refusing to condemn oneself for imaginary shortcomings, and awareness of the temporary nature of such crises, is half the way to overcoming it. When people face crisis, they put an end to God. Paul’s words in Philippians 3:13 are encouraging. “I am not yet what I should be, but I am bringing all my strength to bear on one thing; forgetting the past and looking forward.” Prayer overcomes many crises.

Midlife is the pre-fall season of one’s life. Autumn will surely follow, and illuminate one’s personality with the golden color of maturity and peace. Life will begin again with a new vision for what lies ahead.

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