What is happening to me?

I am 52 old and unhappy with my existence. Till now my wife and I have been happily married for 30 years. I love her as much as I always have. She is a wonderful woman and has been faithful and loving for all of our married lives. She is still good looking too. I really do love her. She isn't the problem. The problem is me!


I find myself feeling like I want a younger woman. I want to fall in love with someone new. It's crazy and reckless but those are my feelings. I never thought I would face something like this. If I could die it would be better than ripping my family apart and hurting everyone I love. I don't know what to do and I am afraid I am going to ruin everything. I am actually have feelings for another woman. I fantasize about having an affair. I am trying to think of ways to make it happen and keep it under cover. I am hurting inside. It's like I feel I could love another woman and have no less love for my wife. Maybe I am becoming a polygamist but how did this happen?

What a weird stage of life this is. I never dreamed it would be so crazy. It's very hard on me emotionally. These thoughts run counter to my life-long values. I have been stressed and crying about it off and on for days now. I hope I can get through this. I have actually had thoughts that if my wife died I would be free to love another yet, if anything happened to her, it would be so painful to lose her.

I could go on but this is some of the pain of my MLC that I am experiencing right now.

Noel's reponse

You are in a transition to what Daniel Levinson in his book "Seasons of a Man's Life' called 'early old age'. In traditional hunter-gatherer societies, a man would begin to work toward becoming and elder (as opposed to simply becoming elderly, which most men and women in our society do) when he was about fifty.

From a Jungian point of view, the desire for an affair with a younger woman is explained as our inner feminine 'awakening', but we project it on to women around us. I found that in my early fifties I became more emotional, and had a greater appreciation for beauty than I had ever had, which I recognized as 'feminine' characteristics, even though I did not feel any less like a man.

The other thing that happens as we age is that we begin to realize some things are gone from our lives (such as the heady feeling of being in love), and we will not experience them again. This can lead to a preoccupation with having the experience.

Hang in there. This too shall pass, and you will be glad you did not act on your present urges.

Comments for What is happening to me?

Click here to add your own comments

Mar 27, 2011
MLC
by: Anonymous

I was married for 23 years. My husband was abusive at times, however in the past couple years became I did notice subtle differences. Like coloring of the hair, wanting to drive my Red sports car and telling me he was old.

I tried to be caring, loving and understanding. I told him all the time how special he was. I let him know always how much I adored him. I started to work nights. He told me several times about a coworker 24 ex meth addict. She was having sex with some of the employees and most of it was oral.

I didn't say much at the time other than I would pray for her. I started working nights. That's when the trouble began. He had an affair with her didn't come home when expected than lied about the whole thing. I did catch him and realized for three months this man was texting her all night just before I got home. He would pretend he was sleeping. I found out about the affair and kicked him out.

She is 24, an ex meth addict with severe emotional problems and this man took advantage of that. Now it is 3 months after the divorce. He is drinking heavy and is showing signs of bloating and claims there is blood in his stool. He is also within the past 3 months shown severe bone loss in his teeth. they are parting. His skin even looks yellow.

You see I know this because he sees my son and I have seen him at the store with this girl. He has no personality anymore. he used to be the life of the party, now is embarrassed and hiding from all the family. He also hasn't seen his granddaughter in several weeks. She love him to death.

He did try to come back at 1st, however since than we have lost everything house, marriage. I just don't understand why a man would do this, I have always been faithful and I have always taken care of myself. I am 48 128lbs healthy.

To go with this person black teeth very heavy and no personality. You see I used to cut her hair. I wonder if this will all end I am still healing but still feel sorry for them and pray everything works out for the best. Anyone know what the ending is please let me know. Bless you all who are going thru this. Get out far far away he will hurt you.

Nov 04, 2010
I could have written this
by: lonely in my marriage

I am also 52, and in a 30 year relationship, 28 years married. Once the kids moved out, I thought to myself, "why am I still here?"

My wife was my lover and my best friend, but, now she seems angry and bitter.

On a recent trip to NYC, our relationship took a turn for the worse. She thinks I am too needy and demanding of her free time. She does not want to have sex.

I look and feel better now than in my 40s because I have addressed my health issues. I do not want a loveless, sexless marriage.

I cannot live this way...

Oct 15, 2010
Dear what is happening to me?
by: NWF

Hello, You have helped me to understand partially what my husband has meant when he told me recently "I know you are in pain and I am in pain also." He left home 3.5 months ago for an apartment close by because we have a 16 year old son. He called his ex high school GF back in Feb. just to say HI after she stopped by his parents house in January while in town to see her sick father. After 4 weeks of long distance calls (1600 miles away)to her he wanted a divorce because now he "loves" her, he doesn't tell me that he doesn't love me though. I see him being torn apart by this affair. She has moved here a few months ago and thinks she is going to get my man after our divorce is through. I really don't think it will go to finilization though.

Can you manage to give me any more insight into what kind of pain you guys feel from this transition. I believe it has been coming for 7 or 8 years from what I can tell now that I know what is happening to him. I miss him so much.

Our love life has suffered for all of these years and we didn't know why. Now everything is fine and he took it out the door with him to share with another woman and it is tearing me apart inside. I think he starting to be confused also.

After 3.5 months we just had a 65 minute conversation, which was very hard for him, but I do feel his anger towards me has lessened and at least he listened to me, he did want to stop the conv. a few times but I managed to keep it going. We usually communicate with email but that doesn't work very well, it is easy to misunderstand thru email. So I called him with a few Q's and I do feel a tiny change in him. We have all (3 of us) been ordered by the divorce mediator to go to counseling.

Any info. will be greatly appreciated.

I hope this is not very hard on you. I have some friends that went thru this a few years ago but he never moved out or had an affair. They are very religious and seems to have helped them. I guess religion helps. Are yo religious, it may help you to cope with the head tricks. The head voice has been called "Tokyo Rose" by another man that went thru this also. Check out newmanhart.com. He gives good advice to men. It may help you also.

Take Care, NWF

Oct 10, 2010
What is happening to me?
by: NWF

"Thou salt not commit adultery" is not a restriction, it is a warning.

Which only fools fail to heed.

By Bob Lonsberry (circa 2004).

You will be forever sorry if you leave and have an affair. It will be an emotional murder for you and your spouse and cause you both so much pain! Don't do it --please!

Just "keep on keepin' on" even though nothing looks familiar to you right now, it will at some point. Hang in there.

I admire your courage to write this information here. It means that you are aware of the impending danger--which is a good thing. Do not let your mind wonder onto sex with another woman, it will destroy you. Hold on. You have a good woman already, keep reminding yourself of that.

Hope this helped. NWF

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Ask Noel.