Your first thought might be to come back when the midlife crisis is over. When men experience a midlife crisis, let’s just say it can be miserable for everyone involved.
We all pass through many transitions in life. Some guys pass through the midlife transition with little to no problems. Others may experience moderate disturbances. Still, others go through something best described as a crisis.
So, how do you deal with a man having a midlife crisis? Here are some ways to get through this experience while maintaining your sanity at the same time.
Remember That You Can’t Make This Go Away
If you’re in a relationship with a man experiencing a midlife crisis, you already know this process is highly complex and hurtful. Your man may question the value of your relationship and could be involved in an affair.
A midlife crisis could take months or years to work through. Although your relationship will likely survive this experience, there are no guarantees.
It’s important to keep in mind that you can’t reason your man out of a midlife crisis. Nothing you can say or do will cause your man to “snap out of it.”
It’s something that must be born by both of you in different ways.
You can’t avoid an impending thunderstorm. You simply have to ride it out. The same is true of a midlife crisis. Your man has to come to the conclusions he needs to through struggle. There is no other way.
But that doesn’t mean there’s nothing you can do to make the duration of this crisis more bearable. There’s a lot you can do.
To Help Your Man Is to Help Yourself
Did you know that helping your man during a midlife crisis can actually be a healthy coping strategy for yourself?
An irony of life is that by helping others out of a rough stretch, we actually help ourselves out of our own set of difficulties. Doing so gets your mind off your own frustrations, improving your mental state.
This may mean being a listening ear, treating your man kindly when he is depressed or angry, or doing small, unexpected acts of kindness for him.
Applying this advice may seem counter-intuitive. You probably won’t feel like doing these things at times. But following through will help change your feelings to more positive ones when it comes to your man.
You’ll improve the situation not only because you take the focus off your own problems. You’ll also avoid a downward spiral of negative interactions between the two of you that will only make things worse.
Ongoing conflict at this vulnerable stage could either cause serious damage to your relationship or end it all together. So, the more positivity the better. Not surprisingly, you’ll need to be the primary source of positivity for a while if that’s going to happen.
Bolster Your Support System
You likely won’t have the support you need from your man if he’s in the throes of a midlife crisis. That’s to be expected.
That means you need to seek out strong, healthy friendships to help you get through these times. Without this support, you simply won’t have the inner strength to help your man and yourself during this turbulent time.
Be careful to seek out friendships that will make your relationship stronger with your man. Not practicing that will only cause far greater relational stress in the long run.
Consider Couples Counseling
“Couples counseling? Are you serious? I’m not the one with the problem!”
That may be true but you’re affected by the problem. And you desire a healthy solution.
There are a few reasons to consider couples counseling if your man is going through a midlife crisis.
The first reason is that you’ll both find ways to better cope with this challenge.
The other major reason is this:
If you tell your man, “You need counseling!” What are the chances he’ll go?
The likelihood is slim to none. Your man already feels insecure about this transition. Earlier in life, he thought he had a good idea of what his life should be like. Now, his world has been turned upside-down.
By telling your man to go to counseling out of frustration, he’ll fear all the more that something could be wrong with him. He’ll also feel judged and will likely resist your advice.
Going to counseling together increases the likelihood your man will go. Very few men would initiate seeing a therapist because of a midlife crisis.
Even if your man isn’t willing to go to counseling, you’ll benefit from going alone. You’ll find proven ways to cope and strengthen yourself for whatever challenges you face.
If you’re in a relationship with a man who’s going through a midlife crisis, you don’t have to suffer alone. Now could be the perfect time to contact the OC Relationship Center to build a better foundation for a healthy relationship!