I have been happily married for more than 12 years. We are both fit and healthy, love, respect and sustain each other, and do everything together. We also have two great kids, have great careers, are appreciated in our well-paid jobs, have our nice residential home and a few investments. Sexually there is still a lot of hot bed activity when the night comes and we both enjoy each other very much. So where is the problem? Simply it is ME! To make you better understand the situation, I will confess that I have been a very faithful husband for years, but currently I just can’t stop cheating on my wife! The “eating the same meat every single dinner” feeling started pressuring me to try to do things I should not. However, there are two conflicting feelings going on inside me. One is that these adventurous affairs will lead me back on the right track where I will be thankful for what I have; while on the other hand, when I consider the risks of getting caught and causing my wife any hurt feelings, this is driving me crazy. Please advice!
Dear Middle-Aged Man,
All human beings have this so called “middle-age crisis” but it manifests itself differently from one person to the other. Also the “middle-age” term does not really have to be taken literally; some go through this crisis as they approach their forties while others get hit in their fifties or even in their sixties. People get hit differently as well – and when I say “people”, I mean men and women equally!
I have seen veiled women take off their veil as they approached forty, others had plastic surgery as they hit menopause, and many had affairs – full fledged affairs. With men, mid-life crisis could be as simple as dying their hair and could get as drastic as walking out on their families and getting married to someone who was younger than their youngest child.
Mid-life crisis is a form of insecurity and it manifests itself in one’s worst fears; the fear of not being beautiful/handsome, the fear of not being appealing to the other gender, the fear of being infertile, the fear of being lonely, or even the fear of dying. We are all human and this crisis is a natural part of our existence. Dear man, do not be afraid of being human!
Your “adventures” are a reflection of your insecurity! You fear losing your hunting skills, you fear being taken for granted, you fear growing old and ancient – and it is only natural! If you want to put an end to your mid-life crisis you have to acknowledge the fact that you have changed and that your life has changed as well. You have to accept your current role in life – husband and father! You are no longer the sought after bachelor! You will never be on the market again! Actually accepting this role is not enough; you have to like it and find ways to enjoy it.
If you want to get over your current addiction to flings and casual relationships you have to accept that you are a husband; a husband is not just a bread-winner or a male capable of mating and reproducing, you are a man committed to one woman and looking forward to growing old with that same woman. You also have to embrace fatherhood and the sacrifices it entails; the first sacrifice of which is placing your kids first and their emotional well-being foremost. You need to come to terms with the fact that you are no longer a free man – you have a family and anything you do will impact them either positively or negatively.
Find ways to enjoy the “history” between you and your wife. Find ways to bond with your children and to become a real part of their lives. Fill your time with activities that enrich your life and highlight the blessings that you have. Do not resent the wrinkles, the white hairs, the changes in your sexual performance, and the commitments you have made. The only way out of your mid-life crisis is to honor your current responsibilities and enjoy them.