Flashcards in Families at Mid-Life Deck (28):
MidLife Crisis-Myth or Real?
Having a crisis is not normative, but having a period of transition and self reflection is. Involves getting over getting older. -Identity crisis if there was foreclosure in adolescence.
Symptoms of Mid life crisis?
Symptoms include: anxiety, depression, dis-ease, dissatisfaction, disillusionment, insomnia, depletion,
Generally people report (at mid life)
Feelings of well-being and greater satisfaction, sense of self control over many parts of life.
Men vs. Women
gender cross over-women become more assertive and man more giving and expressive.
Physical Aging: "The little death"
Shifts in physical and mental agility: memory, reflexes, energy level, speed.
Body changes: metabolism, muscle mass, skin elasticity, hair loss/growth/graying, sensory loss, bladder control, loss of bone density,
Stronger for women
-cultural stereotype of raving maniac
-perimenopausal symptoms start 10 years earlier and may be more severe.
-risk of heart disease, hot flashes, loss of lubrication, insomnia, thinning hair, loss of libido, fuzzy thinking, osteoporosis.
-more than half of women report no symptoms and even post menopausal zest.
Viropause or Andropause
-Testosterone level drops in midlife
-causes physical changes: erections can take longer to achieve, be less firm, take more stimulation. Orgasms can be harder to achieve and less forceful. Prostrates can be enlarged, testicles shrink, sac drops.
-physiological consequences due to socialization: to be competitive and always ready for sex can lead to erectile dysfunction.
Emotional development at midlife
-age of mastery
-increase in wisdom, judiciousness, compassion, depth of perspective, complexity, mad intuition
The Mid-life identity crisis
-internal push to become whole
-own and acknowledge shadow parts of self
-further individuation and authenticity through development of real self
-frightening process because it can involve letting go of who we once new ourselves to be.
Growth in master, identity, and voice
-adoption of feminist identity and higher educational levels are associated with midlife well-being
-women who experienced traditional role regrets but do not make changes at midlife show higher rates of depression.
More apt to struggle on their own
-Can come to a new appreciation of intimacy and connection.
-confront cultural constraints of masculinity
-increasing comfort with emotion
-reconnect with family, friends and community
-take mentoring roles
-financial stability for the future is a looming reality.
-external markers of competence become less available and less satisfying.
-mourning lost opportunities and life choices
-reappraisal of current life priorities
-search fir meaning.
New life structures
-making this time a quest NOT a crisis
-focus in understanding feelings and knowing what you want before you act.
-focus on coming into ones own and living an authentic life.
SES and Cultural Issues
-feeling of having made a contribution does not depend on SES
-economic concerns can take precedence over internal concerns
-physical health can overshadow other issues.
-Patience-this can take time
-mindfulness: loss your mind and come to your senses
-avoid numbing activities
-take some solitude when you can
-men:talk to other men
-think, write, be creative
-stay active, exercise and care for your body
-break ruts and do something different
-confront your fears
-cherish your relationships and contribute to your community.
Parent Relationships at mid-life
-Shift in roles as child becomes the caretaker
-forgiveness and resolution of old conflicts
-further opportunities for differentiation
-get to know your parents as people and gather info
Sibling and extended family relationships at mid-life.
-Opportunities to resolve old issues
-roles can change
-reconnection can feel more important.
-lack of positive models for older adult love.
-as couples launch children they may face an increase of intimacy/connection OR problems with disconnection.
-traditional women may deal with pushed down anger and resentment or push for a more egalitarian marriage.
-differentiation remains key
-May deal with feeling of stigma about what is wrong with me
-solidifying social support networks: how do you meet your needs for intimacy?
-dating: May be a better partner but may be more picky about mate selection.
-Internet dating expands opportunity
Last chance children are now possible with advances in fertility meds
-dealing with regrets: accepting and owning mistakes and self-forgiveness
-differentiation of children and loss of structure of parenthood.
Launching and Young adulthood
-increasing numbers of young adults do not feel responsible for self in 20s.
Many return home due to economic issues.
-loss of innocence: the narrative you create for how things worked out.
-the historical moments that shape a generation.
Problems at young adulthood.
-anxiety about choices without the structure of school
-increased sense of persons, responsibility without as many rewards.
-problems are not taken seriously by others.
-symptoms: depression, anxiety, self doubt, procrastination, escaping into avoiding/numbing activities
-foreclosed (accepting identity without questioning it)
-moratorium (in process)
-diffuse (completely not dealing with it)
Developmental Tasks (of Young Adult)
-What do I do? Job? Career?
--role of serendipity/sychronicity
--knowing one's own priorities
--trial and error
--life skills-household and life management
--emotion/independent decision making
--finding significant other and potential life partner.
--developing a social network
--Differentiation from parents. shift to adult/adult relationship while maintaining connection.
real and perceived opportunities can be limited by SES and minority status.
-hard to get a job without without education/computer skills
-little practice in harsh ghetto environment for learning soft skills of customer service skills.
-issue of maintaining respect in entry level jobs while invisible young black/hispanic men.
-long term dreams can be discouraged and seen as unrealistic.
-breaking the poverty cycle can be seen as disloyal.
-Launching will vary according to cultural influences.
-Is and how early is the individual expected to contribute financially to the FOO.
-Are young people expected to remain at home until marriage.