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Midlife crisis or midlife depression-Things to know and expect about Midlife crisis

Updated on February 24, 2015

Midlife crisis

Midlife crisis is common to both men and women and it usually occurs in middle age between the ages of forty (40) and fifty five years (55), the person becomes agitated or depressed about lifestyle choices. Recently a study carried out by some researchers found out that the concept of a man or a woman going though age change between the threshold of youth and aged is a true physiological state experience by over seventy five percent of middle aged people.

Although research is still ongoing on this unusual trend, psychologists have been able to pinpoint triggers that contribute to this state of mind. Sufferers of midlife crisis might have a compelling need to completely change their entire life; this might be due to internal self examination concerning the person’s life choices, accomplishments and abandoned dreams.

For example if a man in his mid fifties finds himself still living in a small rented apartment he might regard himself as a failure because his life goals and expectations does not match the blueprint in his head. In such situations midlife crisis might lead to depression, stress or rash action which might affect his family negatively or positively depending on the success or severity of the change.

The same situation applies to women around the age of 40, the midlife crisis might center on career goals unattained, being unmarried or not having any children. Not having any children is a verified fear because the menopause period and child bearing window is fast closing.

Having a midlife crisis is not all bad; it opens room for self examination, readjustment and action especially going through rational changes that might yield positive results for the individual and his family.

During middle age certain big change are re assessed, which might be pointers at unfulfilled dreams, certain youthful notions, ambitions and milestones are exposed to the reality of our true position in life.

Some people have nurtured the need to develop their latent talent like being a musician, owning a thriving business, occupying a top managerial position or other creative outlets. If such dreams are unrealized and obvious flaws to such youthful ambitions become very real to the middle aged person, he might regard himself a failure.

Life happens when you reach middle age like the loss of loved ones, accidents, poor health, failed marriages and the death of parents, middle age is a tough period that tests the resolve of any person. Imagine children who have been a part of your life for twenty years moving out to start their own lives, suddenly you’re left alone in an empty house. This could lead to depression if the person cannot find something new like a new hobby, friends or job related activities.

The realization of mortality, slowing down, and reduced stamina are all pointers to what leads to midlife crisis.

Even the grown up son with the grandchildren begin to add to the realization that time is fast going

Making tough decision is part of midlife crisis

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Midlife crisis is like making hard choices without a certain outcomeMidlife crisis have to do with tough decisions for the better.. image of billboard with the inscription tough decisions ahead
Midlife crisis is like making hard choices without a certain outcome
Midlife crisis is like making hard choices without a certain outcome | Source
Midlife crisis have to do with tough decisions for the better.. image of billboard with the inscription tough decisions ahead
Midlife crisis have to do with tough decisions for the better.. image of billboard with the inscription tough decisions ahead | Source

Symptoms of midlife crisis and middle age

A person experiencing midlife crisis goes through certain physical mental and physiological changes that could impact positively or negatively on himself and family depending on the choices taken. Some of the telling symptoms and signs of midlife crisis are morbidity, insomnia, and loss in concentration, depression, fatigue, despair, regret, sadness and tough choices.


Middle age people suffer the condition of being unable to sleep through the night, this is partly due to worrying about certain issues, financial problems, and health related matters, unemployment, depression and sadness at life choices. If not checked through physiological intervention, medication if the condition is brought about because of health reasons, though positive choices and logical decisions the insomnia might lead to more serious complications.


Morbidity is when the middle aged person expresses a strong interest in unpleasant and sad occurrences especially brought about by disease, illness and death of loved ones, family and close friends. The thought of our mortality can have its own challenges that could lead to a middle age crisis and an urgency concerning lost dreams.

Loss of concentration

Loss of concentration comes with aging, as a person ages there is a tendency for gradual memory loss, the brain cells become less active which can be a depressing thought. Dates, figures, names and places start to get fuzzy which might alarm the middle age person into taking desperate actions, the cause of loss in concentration might be because of fatigue, tiredness, not challenging the mind with puzzles, learning new things or other mental activities.

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The realization of our mortality is one of the main telling signs of midlife crisis, this becomes real because our bodies ache constantly, and other age related ailments show up. Such as failing eyesight, extreme tiredness, general body weakness, memory loss, alertness, and respiratory problems.

All of the above are age related ailments that point at a middle aged persons mortality, this could lead to midlife crisis and midlife depression. Even the physical changes like having lots of grey hair, back ache, bowel related problems all add contribute to a feeling of anxiety in mid age.

Though choices

Making though choices in mid age can cause anxiety and stress because the person feels this is the last opportunity to achieve lost ambition, learn a trade, go back top school, start a business or general lifestyle choices. The transition between hanging out all night drinking with the guys and prioritizing family time can be frightening to some, and to others might mean an end to socializing and living a carefree life.

Having responsibility for other and making tough choices that impact positively on his or her immediate family can be a daunting task because many lives depend on your decision and choices. Going through midlife makes all this choices very real to the individual.

Though choices is what midlife crisis is all about

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Tough choices are part of midlife crisisMaking good or bad choices is what midlife crisis is all about. image of billboard with good and bad choicesThe right path might lead to success or failure
Tough choices are part of midlife crisis
Tough choices are part of midlife crisis | Source
Making good or bad choices is what midlife crisis is all about. image of billboard with good and bad choices
Making good or bad choices is what midlife crisis is all about. image of billboard with good and bad choices | Source
The right path might lead to success or failure
The right path might lead to success or failure | Source

Summary of midlife crisis and midlife depression

Midlife crisis can be caused by many unrelated factors some of which I shall mention bellow

1 Unemployment. Finding yourself unemployed in your mid age can be very depressing and could contribute to midlife crisis

2 Illness. Illness is part of aging and mid aged people experience week joints, head aches, and other age related illness.

3 Depression comes with age, illness, fatigue, failed marriages and many other factors

4 Fatigue is a real problem while aging, the inability to perform certain acts could lead to midlife depression

5 Tough choices is part and parcel of aging, making the right decisions could mean success or failure

6 Mortality is an issue because of the sudden realization in mid age of ones mortality

7 Loss of concentration and memory loss is not totally uncommon in middle age

8 Morbidity issues like loss of family members, friends and loved ones can cause midlife crisis

9 Insomnia. Not everyone suffering from midlife crisis experience insomnia.

10 Menopause is a serious consideration during middle age that could lead to depression.


Sadness is part and parcel of midlife depression, taking stock of your life goals, achievements, lost dreams can lead to sadness especially when the dreams remain unfulfilled. Sadness might be real or imagined but with positive changes and working towards a new goal the sadness might dissipate.

Someone going through midlife crisis should look at what he has achieved more than his supposed failures. If the person is living in his own house he should be grateful not many people can achieve that, is he educated have decent children a loving wife all this are laudable achievements


Constant tiredness and fatigue is synonymous with aging especially if the person is obese, over weight, or stressed, middle-aged people feel frustrated because they are unable to perform normally routines optimally. Getting to accept the aging process and the limitations that come with it hits other harder than some, it’s just normal to slowdown a bit when you are in your forties.


Midlife crisis sometimes comes with acute depression which could cause serious health hazards. Depression is linked to stress, low self esteem, and regret and in the most extreme cases suicidal tendencies. Getting grips of your depression is necessary because it is usually fleeting and shouldn’t become a focal point; everyone has experienced depression at list a few times.

The causes of midlife crisis

physical changes
remote causes
unfulfiled dreams
general body weakness
grey hair
memory loss
hair loss
reduced agility
signs of aging

Midlife crisis aka male menopause


Berger in street, unemployment could be far reaching
Berger in street, unemployment could be far reaching | Source

Physical appearance

Physical appearance is a real issue in mid age, the person might be obese, sagging, have stretch marks or loose skin, doing something positive about your appearance would overcome this feeling. Exercise and proper diet, beauty spa treatment a changed wardrobe or hair style might work.


Unemployment issues is a real reason people experience midlife crisis more, without a job and rapidly aging the prospect of getting a decent job becomes harder. Most jobs are usually offered to people within the ages of twenty five to thirty four, crossing this threshold into mid forties greatly reduces a person’s chance for employment.

Sometimes the person finds himself in a dead end job without prospects of promotion or development, midlife crisis and depression is a real issue when weighed against unemployment and job related issues.

Midlife crisis happens and is caused by morbidity issues, midlife transitions, menopause, and unemployment, lack of achievement, poverty, marriage, romantic relationship and physical appearance. Getting grips with the real or imagined issues is how to bit depression associated with this condition, most tomes it is fleeting and would pass after some days.

Marriage and romance

Marriage and romane are some of the issues faced by a person going through midlife crisis. image of a woman being escorted by her father in a marriage ceremony
Marriage and romane are some of the issues faced by a person going through midlife crisis. image of a woman being escorted by her father in a marriage ceremony | Source

Marriage and romance

Being single isn’t all bad but if a person desperately hopes for marriage and find himself/herself in their middle age without any prospects, midlife depression could become a real issue. Menopause is a serious change in the biology of a woman which might affect the ability to bear children, if a woman hasn’t gotten a child and hopes for one this period is very critical.

Not finding that great love to share your life with can be very depressing, this feeling becomes very evident in the mid forties and early fifties, and regret about an old flame might cause bouts of depression.


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