The new mid-life crisis

When I think mid-life crisis my mind conjures up visions of sleazy middle-aged men driving around in red sports cars or Harley Davidson’s.  Not really sure why… something about cliche’s.

But what about women?

There has been a shift. A real shift.

More and more women are suffering from depression, anxiety and plain hopelessness. It seems we have lost our identity and cannot comprehend what the world holds for us.

Think about it for a moment…

How many blogs do you read from women, usually young Mothers, pouring out there hearts in black and white. Internally screaming, sad, frustrated, pleading, searching for who they are.

The pressures we ourselves and society in general places on women these days is bordering on torturous. The expectation to be the successful career woman, the perfect mother and the consummate wife weighs heavily over many women often dragging them down to the depths of despair.

I’m no psychologist so have no idea why or how this has come to be reality for many woman. I just know it has.

And I know because I have been there.

I too have questioned myself and my purpose in life. It frustrates me that I feel a ‘need’  to have a purpose. Maybe it is just human nature, or maybe it is simply from watching too much Oprah in years gone by.

When we are young, fresh out of school or uni we are forging ahead with our lives. We have purpose. We can define ourselves by what we are in terms of our career. The question ‘what do you do?’ is easily answered. Then along comes Mr. Right and the little pattering tiny feet. Many choose to stay home with their children, some don’t, some don’t have the luxury of choice.

This, I think, for many women defines the key time in their life where thy start to wonder who they are? Are they a career woman? Are they a mother? Are they both? Can they be both? Why can’t they be both?

Why is it we feel we need to be defined by something external? By a ‘name’  or a ‘job description’?

For me, the past few years have been my mid-life crisis. Outwardly it didn’t show. I kept on keeping on. Brave face. Social mask. All that. But inside I was churning.

I won’t bore you with all the tumultuous details, but what I will share is the feeling at the other end.

Freedom.

I am free of feeling like I am being judged on everything I do. I am free from caring what others think. I am free from my own little demon sitting on my shoulder. In fact I’ve made friends with him. He inspires me to be true to myself. He convinces me that I’m okay, no matter what he or anyone else says. I’m okay. I’m not perfect, but I’m okay with that.

I can now call myself a writer. One day maybe even an author. It is me. It’s not a job description but defines everything about me. The way I think, the way I act, the way I retreat into my own little head space. Me.

To everyone else I will always be what they need me to be. A wife. A mother. An Aunt. A friend. They are all part of me, but they don’t define me, and those titles don’t come with position descriptions. I have now written my own.

And you can start by writing your own. You really can.

You can also help others write their own too. Be less judgmental of others choices and decisions. Be an ear rather than a voice. And be the change. I think someone once said that….

 

 Have you suffered your own little crisis?
How have you dealt with the pressures?