Here's the next video in our blog series “Dr. Dana Answers Your Questions.” Today’s question is from Laurence: “How can I save my marriage when my partner is in the throes of midlife crisis and wants to throw everything away?”


Please comment below the video to ask your own questions or just to let us know what you think.  We’re frequently shooting new videos and will answer the top questions as part of this ongoing series.

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  • moneejones .

    How can I save my marriage when my partner is in the throes of midlife crisis and wants to throw everything away for another man who has money and tells her she not ever have to what for anything?

  • kim

    OK I am willing to change I have changed to make him feel like he done something with his life but he has to want to see that he has to want it for him self. husband told me yesterday about him and his affair partner that he don’t think it going to work out but he has to see it to the end cause he don’t want a what if. midlife crisis is something you don’t see a lot of and for sure my husband is in one he is a completely different person I have learned to cope with it. how long do midlife crisis last. I would like step by step on how to deal with his response and ups and downs. sometime it’s all about us. We need to do this are we need to go here. Then when he gets down it I need I want. He is not sure what he wants but knows I am not it. One week he say he knows it’s not going to work with his mistress then the next it’s I need to see It through. He is a very negative person I know he had a bad childhood and thinks life is not fair he want to believe in god but then say he don’t. I know he really does want to believe but because of a couple of bad times he throws everything away. We are not rich but we make due I do make more money then him and I have my own shop. He hates me for it. I even told him I would be willing to close it just to make him happy he said no he is not wanting to work on anything. Please help

  • Suzie

    I feel like I am going through a midlife crisis. I have very low self esteem, I am depressed and I am constantly thinking my husband is cheating on me. When I try to talk to him about how I am feeling he either doesn’t listen, makes me feel stupid because I have the feelings that I do or gets angry. What do I do?

    • Mike_Olsen_SMN

      Hi, Suzie – it can be hard for a spouse to understand what you are going through. We always recommend you talk to someone. Communication is a hot button issue in any relationship and there are several articles of advice on our blog. One I recommend for you about anger and communication. I hope this is helpful. http://www.strongmarriagenow.com/truth-anger/

  • Stephie

    Hi, I think my husband is in a mid-life crisis. How does one handle this when one is in a long-distance marriage? I knew something wasn’t right in Sept. 2013 when he picked a fight with me by being very cryptic about the topic and then accusing me of not know what he was talking about. In Oct. 2013, he asked for a divorce. I told him I didn’t want a divorce. He was super stubborn, but I got the help I needed so I from a promarriage therapist. Xmas was a horrible time but it gradually got better with communicating. End of March 2014 it was confirmed that he was in an affair since just after that one-sided argument in Sept. On April 27th he told me he was going to spend two weeks with his mistress to “make some decisions and begin to close some doors.” Said that the trip was actually planned back when he wasn’t speaking to me. He left on April 29th. Since that time, he has been communicating with me every day, telling me he is lonely, misses me (even though we don’t live together at the moment due to work), loves me, and that there are some things that can’t replace me and that he misses our life together. His mistress is also a long-distance relationship, only closer than I am. Bottom line is that he has not followed through with filing any papers and we seem to be coming closer. He seems, though, to be of the mind that he can’t just stop the affair. He has given me a timeframe of Fall 2014 to end the affair. I just don’t get it. How can we be seem to be coming closer but he can’t end the affair? Any insight?

    • Mike_Olsen_SMN

      Hi, Stephie – If he is serious about ending the affair, it needs to end. Now. Unfortunately, this experience is so common we have a whole separate section regarding it. You can find some advice here – http://www.strongmarriagenow.com/survive-affair-infidelity-in-marriage/ – and I wish you the best of luck. Good for you for finding someone to talk to! I hope he can do the same.

  • Starwoman

    Hi…just wanted to thank you for your post…I just emailed him about my situation with my husband…just hope he responds…I’ll let you know what happens…again thx for the post:)

  • marriedandconfused

    Hello,
    Im 50 Wife is 37 married 10 years.have 3 children.I have lost the last 3 years of my families life because of workaway from home.( I) had made the decission to quit and be at home everynight.My health isnt the greatest and I want to be with my family and not just working for them to live without me.
    My wife hasnt worked since before we were married.I am still able to provide for my family same if I was away working. but It doesnt seem like its good enough.
    Now that I am home Wife wanted to work but wouldnt go out to find a job,She wanted me to find her one.Which I did.She opened a checking account in a different bank and never told me,now after many years of having a few extra pounds,she is working out every day and changing her hair,tanning..ect.
    She no longer eats dinner with the kids and I because shes eating things we dont and just eats that when she wants.She asked if I would mined if she went away to visit her family for a few days and never ask me to go.( she will be takinhg the kids).
    No sex,shes always has an upset stomache,headacke,to tired. ect.
    the job she has she works 4 hours a day 4 days a week.I have asked her if she wants out.She has said no.I have said just tell me if you do.I have said I am to old and want to enjoy my life with her and our kids.but if she wants ssomething diff. tell me so time isnt wasted.
    Naturally there is way more to the history. but what should I do from hear.

    • Mike_Olsen_SMN

      Hi, Married –
      Working away from home is hard, not just let but after. You have built lives that don’t include each other by necessity. Find something you both enjoy, and plan a time to do it together. Maybe go somewhere you did when you first started dating. What attracted you to her and what did you enjoy together? Tell her how you are feeling and strive to reconnect as a couple. http://www.strongmarriagenow.com/reconnect-feel-close/

  • T.T

    I have a question, about two years ago, I started to change my perception of my role in life, realizing I’m not truly ever gave myself a thought. In the process I met someone I enjoy talking to . This eventually came out to my husband. This is total disaster in my marriage now of 39 years. He isn’t the same. Very possive , constantly smothered me . I love him but my entire extience can not revolve around each other. He’s is his own enemy. I don’t talk to this person anymore. But I am different. I need stimulating conversation. Any social media he hates . I don’t get out a lot so this is my outlet. But now I feel policed by him on everything. I feel he is going to stop loving me .help.
    The married woman

  • Tammy

    funny how I can relate to this video, I did say yes to selling everything and moving from Ohio to Florida and after a couple weeks he has become another person we haven’t bought a home yet and were staying in an apartment there was no shower, I am staying with my son and he stays there very distant and is always too busy to see me he is drinking very heavily

  • Gilbert

    i’m 49 and my wife just turned 50 this past december, she says she had an epiphanny and now wants to be out of the marriage. she has said she doesn’t love me anymore. she recently took out her IUD and is currently using a hormonal patch. oh we also have a 7yr old together. i’m trying to save our marriage but she is unwilling to listen. now she sleeps in the room with our 7yr old and its been over a month we have been intimate and i truly love my wife and take my vows very seriously. I am currently going thru anger management issues but i’m currently engaged to save our marriage of 11 plus years.

  • Donna

    My husband is having an affair. He says he is not happy. I do understand we are disconnected. We have had many things happen to us over the last several years…..financial issues, a problem with a child, loss of job, menopause, etc. I admit to putting him on the “back burner” and obviously this affair has opened my eyes to how I have been treating him. I love my husband and want the relationship we used to have. We have discussed the current situation but he is not certain I will be able to get past the affair. I have been working on some of the tips you have given but not sure how far to go with it. I always tell him I love him but lately he does not say it back…i am not sure about touching eitherI believe he is not comfortable since he has not broken off the affair. He has not seen her since I found out but they do speak by phone and text. I am not sure what to do. I believe he still has feelings for me but doesn’t want things to go back to the way they have been. How do I get him to stop the affair and what do I do about showing affection if I don’t get any response?
    Donna

  • JoBeth

    My husband is 65 and I 60, we have been married 40 years. We both have issues. I have just accepted that I am a controller and have to have the last word to explain my actions. I know I need therapy and will start that soon. I am a passionate emotional type. My husband however is the quiet type and very sensitive man, we have just descovered that he has Dysthymic Depression and uses alcohol to overcome his feelings. He remembers every fight back to year 1, where as I forgive and forget, yet I do strike out at him for him for not giving me the affection I desire. He has asked me for a devorice twice, 5 years ago, which I asked for time to see if things would change, I did with lots of attention to him bring the marriage back for a few years. He has recently flip floped struggling with his feelings, but now says he has to follow through, that he does not love me anymore, should have done this years ago, and wants out again. He will live in our camper on the road for a while so how do I show him I am sorry and can finally make the changes I do need to make, if he will not be around. I have told him Im going for therapy but he does not think it will help as I have tried before. Yet he will not admit to the alcohol abuse or depression. I want to have my husband love me again…

  • A Adams

    My husband says he loves me, but is not sure he wants to stay in the marriage. He has been unfaithful in the past, which caused me to freeze him out emotionally and physically. I became very discontent with my life to the point that he said he didn’t like my personality. I am willing to bend and have made huge changes in my life, many of which he says he can’t trust. He’s not sure things won’t go back to the way they were. He is also withholding sex because that has been a barren place in our relationship and also a place where he is most injured in his life from his past. I am willing to walk through the fire, but not sure what to do when I my husband is half in and half out. He travels extensively which allows him a lot of space, but I’m not sure how to resolve this in my heart and mind when I am wishing for a certain outcome and he’s so resentful of the past.

    • Mike_Olsen_SMN

      Hi A, our system might be a good fit for you, since it allows you to address some issues even while he is traveling. Normally, we would recommend seeing a counselor together but it sounds like this may be an obstacle for you. You both need to understand you have hurts in your path, and create a new marriage together. http://www.strongmarriagenow.com/marriage-counseling-years-disappointment/

  • Stephanie tello

    We been married 31 years, now my husband Said’s he does not love me no more. Month later he saids he should just move out. My husband travels for work . I love him very much. He does not answer text or phone now for a month. He still direct deposits his checks. He is 51, I am 50. Don’t know what to think or do? I am dying here .

  • Toni Bussell

    We’ve been married for 30 years, and I have a disease called Hashimotos which makes me very sick, depressed, and worried because I have two kids a boy who’s 12, and a girl who’s 9 and I try my best to be affectionate to my husband, but every time it feels like he doesn’t want to be affectionate back maybe because he’s tired, injured, or just not felling right but I feel like it’s something else. Me and my husband fight a lot about raising are kids, affection, and politics but each time we fight I’m scared something might happen to me. Please help me out my family is counting on it.

    • Toni Bussell

      My 12-year old son actually wrote the above message to you. He just showed it to me. My heart is breaking that he feels so helpless as he watches my husband and I struggle in our marriage. I do not know how he found your website but I am grateful that he did.

  • Ramesh

    My wife is 42 and m 43 we hv been married for 22 years we hv 2 daughters and now a days she is busy in work some time she comes verry late and if i ask her about that she use to say dont ask me like that question and when i check her mobile i used to found some txt saying love you baby and want to met you etc but i love my wife a lot so m worring that it may brake our relation which i dont want we both are from asia if i cant make her happy then i am planing to go back plz help

  • mike jones

    Hi my name is Tony. I’m going through something I can’t even fix. My wife loves me I believe but I just can’t seem to be sexual with her because of trust issues. She 34 and im 37. An we have two girls together I want to be here with all my heart. What do I do?

  • Clover Williams Stein

    Hi. I’m 43. My husband is 45. We have two young boys at home. We’ve been together for 18 years. I have recently realized that I am not happy in this marriage and have started questioning everything about it. The most startling thing to come up is that I’m not sure I’ve ever really been sexually attracted to him. We were great friends and had lots of fun together. The timing was right to settle down. I thought he would be a good provider and a good parent and he has been those things. Our sex life has never been great. There’s no fire to rekindle. As he has put it, some things can be fixed and some can’t. We are both wondering if this can be fixed. How did we last this long without real passion? Has it all been a sham? Am I remembering wrong?