Life Advice



Ask Amy: Midlife crisis tears family apart

By Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Dear Amy: Is the male “midlife crisis a real thing?

After 20 years of marriage, my “pillar of the community” husband started acting strangely.

He started dressing young, going to bars, and then quit sleeping at night.

When I found out he had an affair, I blew up and he took off with the young barfly. Our grown daughters and I are hurt and sad that our family life seems over. I thought we had a great marriage and family.

Do these men ever come home?

I can easily forgive him and go to counseling to get back on track.


We had made all kinds of retirement plans before this happened.

In addition to being a husband and father, he is my best friend, too.

— Don't Know What to Do

Dear Don’t Know: Midlife crises are not confined to men. And while these changes can seem very sudden, this is a panicked response to the existential crisis brought on by the realization that one’s life is more than half over.


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