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I’d like to share a bit about Mid-Life with you, from my observations and experience going through this period in my life myself.

What & When is Mid Life?

Well, generally speaking, it hits most of us some time between the ages of about 43 – 50 years of age.

Children:

Summa Cum Laude - Graduation 2002 - University of Northern Iowa - kimberly-turner.comThis is when children have reached or are about to reach college age, and the younger children are almost ready for the same journey. At this time, a few things seem to happen…

Our kids are starting a life of their own, often with a partner of their own too. It is such a proud moment, yet often difficult to accept after raising them their entire lives to this point.

Retirement Planning:

money up - cashhike.comThe focus on retirement becomes a real thing and actual planning starts. With the children becoming more self sufficient, hobbies and leisure activities are apt to fill your time.

Ensuring there is enough money put aside to support yourself after retirement through your golden years is essential, and people begin to start to feel that urgency.

Physical Changes:

stretchingIt is at this age when women don’t have to worry about their monthly cycle interfering with what we feel comfortable doing, and babies can pretty well be considered a thing of the past. It is said that women are coming into their sexual peak around this time too.

Men can be feeling a bit of a crunch when it comes to intimacy around these ages, however, as erectile dysfunction reveals its ugly head.

For both sexes, hair can disappear in some places, and appear in new ones. This can be disturbing to some, and can cause new self-esteem issues.

Other health issues can start to plague mid-lifers, and it’s important to get physical check-ups & benchmark tests done, to better tackle anything as it comes up, instead of leaving real problems until there is a real emergency.

Stay active, get fit, eat healthy, savor life.

Mid Life Crisis:

Tuned De Tomaso PanteraIn the past, it has been typical for society to paint a mid life crisis with a broad stroke, and mostly focus on men having this issue. However, as more women have increased their status, both in the work place, and subsequently, financially, women have been falling into this trap too.

This can mean one of two things – either these folks will increase their planning for retirement and consider providing for themselves and their partner, or they regret the time and efforts they have thus far dedicated toward job career, spouse & family, and feel they are entitled to devoting more time to themselves.

Time for a new sporty car, improvement of personal appearance and time for themselves, which can lead to meeting a new and younger version of a partner. In other words, all hell breaks loose as they think of the freedom to do exactly as they wish. This is the extreme, but it does happen and we have all seen the results.

For these reasons, it would make sense to ensure as couples work toward mid-life, they take the time to cement their relationships with their partner by offering each other some degree of freedom to devote time to having fun with each other.

Being confined to a relationship and accepting responsibilities of family are, even in the best of times, challenging and exhausting. Partners need time to really enjoy being with each other and in this way, when the mid life crises come, they can be as mild as possible.

Dating:

dating coupleMany mid-lifers have been married, some a few times. We are seeing an upward trend of more single mid-lifers than ever before. Some are divorced, some separated, and some have never married.

This leaves the door open for dating, and many single ladies & bachelors are not only dating, but turning to online dating as a way to connect with people that match their criteria they’ve developed over half a lifetime. By the time you’re an in-betweener, you know what you like, what you don’t like, what you will tolerate & what you won’t.

Also, as everyone lives busier lives, between work, possibly children, and getting healthy & fit, little time can be left, at this time in your life, for meeting people & dating, especially if clubs & bars are not your scene anymore.

Activities:

Parasailing Orlando, Florida - kimberly-turner.comJust like teenagers are subject to their hormones, people reaching mid life are subject to their hormones as things inexorably begin to change.

Open conversation and truly considering a partner’s feelings will help each person in the relationship to come through these years unscathed.

Taking actual interest in the activities of your sweetie and sharing with them, as you likely did when you first got together, will help both partners.

Household Roles:

gardening - cookingwithkimberly.comThese should be the fun years when the kids don’t need you every hour of every day, and spouses can take off and enjoy a vacation for the two of them, or sharing dinner out.

Even crossing the lines and helping your partner wash the car, or assisting the other with doing the shopping can re-establish closeness that sometimes fades because each person just knows what they have to do.

Fanning the Flame:

campfireShare date nights when you devote that bonding evening to only each other.

If there is a shared spiritual life, a couple might, more easily share religion, and often, this alone, can get them through mid life and its challenges.

Before you reach mid life, it is a good idea to implement some of these ideas to establish real closeness. Any way you look at it, mid life will come with all of its consequences & all of its beautiful benefits too.

Some of us fortunate ones find that we just slide in and out of mid life with never a problem, but some of us face great difficulty that we simply do not understand. For some of us, both partners go through a difficult mid life period at the same time, with the results being painful & divisive.

Advice from Experience:

Gerald & Ingrid Turner - ingridturnertoday.comSo, like all important matters in life, we need to plan for mid life and make it a fulfilling and beautiful time for ourselves & partners as we prepare for tomorrow, because after mid life comes that robber of good health and declining activity – retirement and old age. This brings with it a whole new set of delightful issues.

That being said, enjoy your mid life years to the fullest and make as many beautiful memories as you can, just as you would rearing children.

In this age, there are an amazing number of activities for partners to share, and wonderful counselors to assist with any struggles that may arise. However, for each of us, if we put our partners first in all things, the result will be an amazing time of our lives where we are afforded the opportunity to engage in many enjoyable activities that were impossible while raising young children.

This is the time when all the hard work of the early years start to pay off, and you are still young enough to take advantage of it. Do not save all this hard work to be enjoyed after you retire, because many of us will not live long enough to enjoy it.

My husband was the hardest working person I have ever known and he often spoke of retirement and what a wonderful time it would be for us, but a few months before he planned to retire, he died of a rare cancer, and I was left to our retirement – alone.

Life if meant to be enjoyed, do not allow life to pass you by as you live for only the future.

~ Ingrid Turner

One thing is for certain. Change will come. Whether you work positively or negatively will determine your outcome in your mid-life adventure!