Beyond Babedom

We're (way) over 40. Deal with it.

Stuck in the Middle

As I was shaking the snow from my bushes, for some reason I started thinking about the whole mid-life crisis issue. Not that it had anything to do with my task, but you know how your mind starts to wander. Well, after this huge snow storm I had a ton of snow to shake off and lots of time to think. And, I’m happy to report,  I came to several pithy conclusions.

Although men commonly go through a midlife crisis in their 40s or 50s, women don’t seem to. That got me to wondering: why? Why don’t we go through a midlife crisis ourselves? Yes, of course we go through menopause, but that’s different. It’s biological and doesn’t include the same types of soul searching (or sexual transgressions) as the MLC. So, I started to think about whether or not I might have ever felt that “I’m not going anywhere where I thought I’d be going” angst and it suddenly occurred to me: of course – we go through it at 30!

Remember? Turning 30 is such a negative milestone for so many women. Some stay there forever (or pretend to, at least). Many sing the “I’m not celebrating my birthday this year” soliloquy. Tons start thinking about their biological clock and rush around to find someone to father their children. Most, at the very least, don’t look forward to it.

We start to feel old, to feel like we didn’t do what we were supposed to do, to question our career decisions. Shouldn’t we be farther along now? Why aren’t we making more money? That, my dears, is a midlife crisis – but usually without the gold chains and unbuttoned shirts (although, I do remember showing more cleavage. . . )

But, the big question is: why do we go through it 10-20 years before men do? After all, we have a longer life expectancy, no? Shouldn’t our MLC be later?

Ah, therein lies the answer. We now have a longer life expectancy. But throughout history, women died early, mostly because of the dangers of childbirth. Women dying before 50 – even when you look back to just to the 1800s – was pretty common.

So, here is my conclusion: we do have midlife crises, but we have them at the mid point of our ancestral sisters’ lives. And by the time we reach 40-50, we’re completely past that. And we’re free to make fun of men, going through theirs.

Because, after all, now that we live longer, don’t we deserve it?

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This entry was posted on Thursday, February 11th, 2010 at 3:51 PM and is filed under Just Fun, Relationships, Socializing. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

  1. David Alexander says:

    I think both men and women go through a series of crises (although I wish we could find a better word for it), where we question where we’ve been and where we are going. There are a number of different sign-posts we pause at in our lives. For men, those sign-posts were often external and set up by others – get a good job, establish yourself in the world, raise a good family. The “crisis” occurs when the man asks, “Is that all there is?”, and doesn’t like the answers he gets. Since we are often viewed by women as simplistic creatures, you tend to focus on the externals.

    BTW: gold chains? unbuttoned shirts? Lucille, this just in — the 80’s are over.

  2. Lucille says:

    Hey, Dave, I KNOW guys who have done this. In fact, my brother’s former partner did just that. Ugh

  3. DJC says:

    Thirty? I was celebrating making the biggest decision of my life. Quit my first career, sold everything and drove with a girlfriend to California! Females know early when they need to change direction, men usually wait until the female instigates a fork in the road.

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