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Preventing Your Midlife Crisis from Affecting Your Marriage

By Waverly Hanson April 01, 2023 Family

You probably know a few couples who got divorced after being married for decades. Going through a midlife crisis can cause a marriage to dissolve. The midlife crisis itself can have a negative impact on the marriage or can make one of the spouses realize that the relationship is not fulfilling.

A Midlife Crisis Is a Natural Reaction to Aging

You may realize that you lived halfway through your life and might not feel satisfied with what you have done with the experiences you have had. You might feel that you don’t have much time left to enjoy life.

Lack of Contentment as a Reason Behind the Crisis

Your relationship to your spouse might be one of the reasons why you do not feel fulfilled, but you might also feel unhappy because you haven’t reached your personal goals or do not have a career you enjoy. It is important to identify the areas of your life in which you do not feel fulfilled instead of letting these negative feelings overwhelm you and think they are all about your marriage.

Midlife Crises Can Lead to Divorce

Individuals often feel that they need to be more independent. They may also decide that their marriage is simply not fulfilling. It is not uncommon to have an affair or to engage in other behaviors that are hurtful to a marriage because of a midlife crisis.

Divorce Is Not the Only Outcome

However, it is very important that you do not allow your crisis to affect your marriage in a negative manner. If you begin to totally blame your midlife crisis stage on your marriage, you’ll find that fixing your relationship will not be easy. Thankfully, it is still possible to fix your marriage even if it has already been negatively affected by your midlife crisis.

This will take time though, and it’s very important that you are able to talk with your spouse and, if possible, agree on what needs to be done to repair your marriage.

How to Have a Respectful, Loving Conversation

Please do consider contacting a marriage-family counselor, coach or therapist with a great reputation of success as trying to repair your relationship alone often is not effective. Joining a marriage group or class or attending a retreat is another way to get a better perspective. Sometimes we are just too close to the situation ourselves to be objective.

What Is Really Causing Your Dissatisfaction?

Take some time to really think about what you are going through in order to identify what is causing your dissatisfaction. You might conclude that this crisis is not really all about your marriage. Therefore, you should not separate from your spouse in an impulsive manner because you crave independence or new experiences.

As a couple, there are many times when you have fallen into ruts without meaning to do so. When that happens, it can appear the grass is greener elsewhere. When you take the time to explore new interests and not assume that your spouse would disapprove, you may be surprised instead. You can find more helpful tips here.

Working with One Spouse Is Okay Too

If your marriage is not fulfilling, ask yourself why and hopefully include a marriage coach or counselor. Include your spouse if possible as they may also be dissatisfied with the marriage or have many issues as well. You should look for ways to improve the relationship so that the marriage meets your expectations as well as your spouse’s. Even if your spouse does not want to be included, please do go by yourself.

I am committed to changing the myth that going alone to a counselor or coach won’t work to improve a marriage. So many people believe this. I have found many times that marriages have totally turned around by just working with one spouse. Going to talk to someone is very important to help you put things into perspective and understand how your midlife crisis might be distorting the way you see your marriage.

Going through a midlife crisis is a sign that you need to change some things to make your life more fulfilling. You can take another view and see this as an opportunity to grow as an individual and to improve your marriage as well.

Let’s Have a Conversation:

Is your marriage going through a “midlife crisis”? What things do you think need to be changed to make your relationships more fulfilling? What approaches have you tried or would you like to try? Please join the conversation.

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The Author

Waverly Hanson is a coach, counselor, author and military consultant. Her positive, nurturing and gently challenging style works well with her mission to save marriages and help people find life choices. After 25 years, she is still awed by the hundreds of “miraculous turnarounds” experienced.

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