Mid-Life Crisis Q&A-David Reece

From David Reece’s answering comment:

Thank you for your reply.
i am going to restart my life, move on without moving on. do what is right by my children and myself.
my wife is hell bent on destroying the marriage and there maybe nothing i can do to stop her. till divorce there will always be a marriage to save, no matter what damage has been done.
my final question would be as to what to look for as she goes from replay to depression?
i still have children living with her and though i may not be able to help her, i can my children.

thank you.

Dear David,
There’s nothing you can do to stop her from what she’s doing to destroy her marriage. However, even if she goes on and gets a divorce, there’s still hope and time for her to turn around if you’re still willing to try again with her. There is always hope as long as you still love your wife. She will eventually find that she is not the only one with choices. People in emotional crisis suffer from “entitlement” thinking, and unless put on notice, or put in check with a boundary,(both of which requires action, because words mean nothing to a spouse in crisis), think the one they are abandoning, and treating like dirt, will simply be there whenever they decide to return.

A person can move forward in their lives without moving on. No one can tell you how you should choose to live, nor can they choose for you. No one can live your life, but you. People need to learn to respect and support the choices of other people, even if/when they don’t understand why a particular choice is made. This even includes the terrible and devastating mistakes of the spouse in crisis.

Sometimes the best way for someone to learn something important, is to let them go to do for themselves. If you’re always there to ‘catch’ them, they’ll never learn anything. Almost all of the time, it takes allowing someone the space to experience devastating pain that comes through falling down hard on their faces. This is often the most important springboard for learning from our various mistakes.

That’s even true when it comes to trying to advise people in this area of life. Because most people are so inherently stubborn about going their own way(and I, too, was like that, when it was me), it’s often better to give the advice, then step back, and give them the room they need to do what they think they need to do when they think they need to do it.

To do otherwise, in the name of trying to ‘fix’ someone they can’t fix, or have “other control” when one cannot control anyone but himself/herself, is to take the consequences, responsibility and the blame for the damage that can be caused when advice is taken that can lead down an even worse path than before.

People don’t want to the take the responsibility for what they cause by exercising undue influence upon someone who is doing their best to cope and deal with a bad situation. Yet, they will say various things that are designed to guilt you into doing what they want, so that THEY don’t have to deal or cope with what they can’t control in the first place-YOU.

One’s friends and family mean well, but their “fix-it” advice usually becomes all about controlling others when they can’t seem to deal effectively with themselves. It’s all too easy to tell someone what to do, when you’re not in a situation like this, nor have dealt with a situation of this kind.

I’m unsure why I’ve put that down, but over time, people have come to me with concerns that their friends and family have spoken up and advised them to walk away from their spouse in crisis. While I realize it’s hard to watch someone going through something, bear in mind that people who advise others to walk away from their relationships are doing so because they don’t understand the aspect of commitment-and marriages and relationships are already too disposable in this day and age.

I don’t advise people to do anything that’s going to cause a major-life’s change unless it’s what they’ve chosen to do. On the other hand, since you can’t control what she does in the first place, and can only control yourself, my suggestion would be not to worry about what happens when/if she decides to begin moving forward into Depression from Replay. When/if she returns, she would return still broken. I hope that when/if this happens, that you’ll be prepared to deal with her, as your own growth still remains to be done.

She’s not the only one who is called upon to make inner changes. You, too, must also make these for yourself. People often think the spouse in crisis must change, but they don’t need to, but I can tell you from my own experience, that’s not always the case, and that would be a subject for a future blog article.

As a general rule, people who are getting ready to move from Replay to Depression will show an emotional awakening to what they’re doing within themselves first, that often leads into a time of self victimization,(still avoiding their contribution to events, and acting like things have happened to them, rather than look at what they did to cause them). Then, as time moves forward, they will experience a temporary return to their former selves that is recognizable to their spouses.

They may or may not apologize for anything they’ve done at that point, (because they’ve not examined themselves that deeply as yet), but there is usually a softening in their formerly arrogant attitude that occurs as the former high of their Replay stage begins to wind down, moving toward the low of the Depression stage-and even this takes time.

They may or may not decide to return to their spouse-that’s not in anyone’s control. It’s a gradual slide, as it’s described in the stages. They will trade their replay apparel, for the more normal apparel they had worn before, and their personality that was altered during Replay, will return to normal. This is not a permanent change by no means, because as long as they contain issues within themselves, they’ll continue to be pulled in by the mid-life crisis.

Now bear in mind, that this doesn’t happen overnight-usually one in Replay will continue trying anything and everything to keep that ultimate high going for themselves. It’s a major part of their tactics used to avoid the facing of themselves, and until they hit a brick wall in their Replay behaviors-they’re worse than the energize bunny-they keep going, and going, and going.

Also keep in mind that the “children of their issues,” are constantly fighting for control, and because none of these “children” from the past want to be resolved, they’ll continue coming forth and drive these behaviors continuously.

Many people in crisis fight the awakening aspect, because it requires change, and people in the mid-life crisis hate change, don’t want to embrace it, and change also brings about fear of the unknown. God continues to work His hand within their hearts, gently nudging them forward, at their most receptive of times. As for right now, your wife must needs to be let go, and put solely in the hands of God so He can deal with her.

May God continue walking with you as you continue your own journey into wholeness and healing for yourself, David.

Big Hugs!!
HB

Since 2002, Hearts Blessing has been a pioneer in the area of knowledge and information written about the Mid Life Crisis. The owner and author of https://thestagesandlessonsofmidlife.org she writes articles that help people learn more about this confusing time of life. The main goal of this site is to help people know and understand that no matter what happens, every situation works out to the good of those who love the Lord, and are called according to His purpose. :)
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7 thoughts on “Mid-Life Crisis Q&A-David Reece

  1. David Reece says:

    Your incite was a good reed,

    alas I feel right now there is no hope for my marriage of sixteen years.
    all the key points are there, right now my spouse has made me leave, she spends an unhealthy amount of time on her computer chatting to ” friends” has admitted to flirting with them, even entertained running off with them, people she has never met. she wants her own time and space, wants a divorce, and thinking of moving. she has told me to move on, thinks of me as a friend but dose not love me. questions her marriage to me over the last few years, and wants to date other people. feels tide down.

    Our children feel ignored to the point that two wish to move in with me, and I am at a loss. I love her so much I could wait a life time for her to come through, but like all it is hard to tell at what stage she is and how long it would take or even if I should wait.

    Any advice at this time would be warmly welcome, slowly I am moving on at my pace last thing I want to do is let go of my love for her.

    thanks, again I found your incite helpful

    1. HeartsBlessing says:

      Hello David,

      Based on what I’m reading, your wife is definitely in Replay at this time. May I ask why you allowed her to make YOU move out, when it’s not you that wants out? Also, are you still financially supporting her(other than child support)? If so, why are you enabling her to continue to disrespect you like this? In order for her to feel the full consequences for her actions, you would need to not only back down, but also make it clear that she must begin learning to stand on her own. If she does not want to be married, then she cannot have the benefits that come with being married, and that would include financial support. If you’re paying child support, and two of the children want to move in, let them, and reduce the amount of child support you’re paying for them, but don’t pay any more than necessary–the purpose is to “force” your wife to stand on her own, as a result of her actions. This is not vindictive actions, this is consequences. Yes, it would make her angry, but she started this, you didn’t, and if she felt she couldn’t take the consequences and decided to move on, then that would become what has always been her problem. The questions I ask don’t require an answer, these are questions to make you think about what you are doing, rather than what she is doing. You can’t do anything for her, but everything for yourself.
      You can wait without waiting, you can move forward without moving on, and you would also need to overcome your fear of losing her. That’s already happened, so there’s nothing left to lose. Backing off, giving her space to figure herself out, and removing the safety net that you may still have under her in the way of financial support, may cause her to rethink herself and her motives. She’s expecting you to continue standing and waiting around, while she does what she wants, when she wants, and in a marriage, this is unacceptable. You can set firm boundaries on what you will and won’t do, the rest being up to her, whether to honor these, or rebel, but these would be to protect you, not her. She is telling you the things she is,(wanting you to move on,etc.), in an effort to reduce her own guilt, but don’t you do anything that would be dishonorable to yourself, most especially considering that you’re still married. You would also need to begin looking within yourself to see the areas where you would need to begin growth, change and becoming, and look past your love to see the reality of the selfish woman you are married to at the moment.
      What she feels is part and parcel within the mid-life crisis, but sometimes it takes removal of contact, the stopping of everything on the part of the left-behind spouse, in order to cause the mid-life spouse to begin to see that the best thing they had ever had, was standing in front of them all along. Yet, you don’t have control over what she does, how she feels, and what she does in the future. So, you learn to let go, set boundaries where appropriate, and let God have her to deal with. She will reap what she has sown, given time, and you must learn to stand back and let her do it for herself.
      She may turn and accuse you of not caring, just to try and keep you in the emotional loop/cycle, when you first back off, but you’re not accomplishing anything at all while you continue trying to fix what you can’t fix, because you didn’t break it to begin with.
      Again, at the risk of repeating myself, you have nothing else to lose, it’s already been lost.
      Otherwise, learn to be friendly, but distant, and even that will bring some change of its own, as she will begin to see she doesn’t control the situation like she did. You’ll most likely be accused of not caring, although she has told you to “move on” etc…she is just talking to try and justify herself–don’t give her anything to feed her justifications for her wrong actions toward the marriage.

      Last, but not least, walk your own journey, learn what it is within you that needs growth, change and becoming. Let your wife go, let God have her, learn to love from a distance, and understand there is hope, there is always hope as long as you have love in your heart for your wife.
      Use this gift you’ve been given..time is what you have, and what you can work with. The mid-life crisis takes time, sometimes lots of it, but if we use it wisely within the area of our own growth, we will stand to gain so much more than we think we are losing.

      I hope this helps.
      ((hugs))

      1. David Reece says:

        Thank you, your words are of kindness and I will pray for direction. I have preyed that god will help her at this time, guide her, keep her safe.

        I take my vows of marriage as not only a commitment to my wife but to god. they were made in his house, so as you say I will love but from afar.
        In time I hope, if its gods will we will be together again. God has taught all of us to forgive at that point it will be my turn.

        God bless you, I thank the lord that he bought you to me in my time of need.

        David.

        1. HeartsBlessing says:

          Hello again David,

          Pray for direction, and whatever God directs you to do, do it, even if it doesn’t make sense to you at the time you receive instruction. God teaches us to forgive, yes, yet, God is also a God of boundaries as well. He will not lead you somewhere that He will not lead you through. When He directs/speaks/instructs, He’s not just talking to hear Himself talk, He would be trying to help you navigate your way through this hard emotional time you’re facing.
          For what it’s worth, I understand how you feel, and in time, I pray you’ll find peace, and direction from God, as He is the only one who knows what the future holds.

          Blessings to you,
          HB

          1. David Reece says:

            Thank you for your reply.
            i am going to restart my life, move on without moving on. do what is right by my children and myself.
            my wife is hell bent on destroying the marriage and there maybe nothing i can do to stop her. till divorce there will always be a marriage to save, no matter what damage has been done.
            my final question would be as to what to look for as she goes from replay to depression?
            i still have children living with her and though i may not be able to help her, i can my children.

            thank you.

  2. David Reece says:

    thank you, god bless you. keep safe and happy. if you wish I will let you know the out come. my god keep you safe.
    thanks again

    1. HeartsBlessing says:

      Dear David,
      If you so choose, keep me posted. You can always ask questions to get answers. 🙂 There is no such thing as “dumb” questions, but one doesn’t get answers unless they ask questions. 🙂

      Stay safe, and take care. It will all work out, one way or the other, with the help of the Lord. 🙂

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