Introduction to Midlife Relationships
Midlife crisis changes a person’s life in many profound manners including how they connect to other people. As midlife changes a person, it shifts who a person talks to for insights in life. A person in midlife crisis will often revisit old friendships to close unresolved questions and seek new friends to open new perspectives. Another unexpected change is how midlife crisis can shift relationship chemistry between existing partners. It isn’t uncommon for a person in midlife crisis to no longer feel connected to their current partner.
Midlife crisis is also all about redefining one’s midlife relationships.
The more the non-crisis partner holds only the ideals of the original relationship, the less likely they will be able to adapt to their changing midlife crisis partner.
I help people sort out midlife relationships. We also have a complete relationship section to help you work through your midlife relationship challenges.
The most common midlife relationship trap is simply that people force their relationship to stay as it was and not change over time. A person can force a relationship in many different manners. Forcing a relationship to meet an ideal can blind a person from seeing what they need in their actual relationship or that a current relationship is shifting.
The Nature of Midlife Relationships
People love to say that a soulmate is their goal as a partner. For all the talk about soulmates, people rarely understand or know how to spot soulmates. Our feelings/emotions trick us more than we may realize. When we first meet a person with a powerful connection, our emotions tend to bind very deeply and also initially blind us a bit. Yes, soulmates do exist, but the need to find a committed partner (our species does want to continue with children) causes our body to use some biological tricks on the mind to bind some relationships to feel deeper than they might be.
In midlife transformation, people shift their focus for what they look for in midlife relationships. If when younger a person looks hard to find the best partner for children strangely during midlife transformation a person flips around to seek a partner more based on their own needs relative to their current crisis. Another angle to consider: If a person when younger doesn’t feel they had a soulmate, then ironically during midlife transformation looking for soulmates will all of the sudden take on a new importance. So many very different patterns come out of Midlife Crisis in how people hold and look for partners.
Midlife Relationships and Judgement
To force a person to stay in a midlife relationship: with judgment, with words, with force, only proves you aren’t present with a soulmate.
If a person is truly your soulmate, they then can be released to be free and grow. True soul mates will give space at critical points of life when space is required to find oneself. A person cannot force a relationship into being soul bound. To force another person to be 100% present is to destroy a relationship.
I see this in my work with people: married couples who are soul companions, being truly deep friends. But often an insecure partner responds to midlife changes with judgment in an attempt to change their partner to fit them. A fast answer: this never works.
Part of the full definition of soul mate is to stay a soulmate even after midlife crisis and change. If you think your partner is a soulmate within midlife crisis: then you will need an almost inhumanly deep patience at this point to discover over a two year period of change, if they’re your soul-mate. Not everyone has the endurance to make it through such a test.
Never force soul partners. Instead, give your partner the freedom to grow and become who they need to become. If you restrict your partner only because you fear to get hurt or to lose them, then you are not their true soulmate either, you are forcing their change to be about you rather than their own choices.
I know this is hard for many people to understand initially: but some relationships are so close to being a soulmate, that often you only discover the difference at times of extreme testing. Midlife crisis is such a time. If you respond with grace and non-judgment, not only will you discover what depth of relationship you truly have, but you actually will also strengthen your relationship. If you force a relationship thru an extreme time by adding more tests on top of that, then being human, most of the time you will break each other’s spirit and destroy the relationship.
To be soul bound is not to be glued to a person but rather to move in and out of a dance over time.
Never think this soul dance as binding the other person to you. Rather you learn how to gracefully move through life with your soul partner to help each other always grow.
Deeper Thoughts about Partners
When I was younger, I used to wonder if soul mates existed in life. Not everyone believes in soul-mates. From personal experience in helping people find partners, I do know soulmates exist.
Soulmates are neither rare nor common; rather it’s a question of awareness that determines if you find a soulmate in life.
It isn’t that soulmates need to be rare: the real problem is that people try too hard! In a rush to have a relationship, people just are not patient enough to find their soulmate. It’s easy to say a person is your soulmate, but seeing the proof and having a soul mate, is a more profound process in the end.
You cannot be with a soulmate if you are busy struggling and blinded by a just good enough relationship. If you’re always rushing to be in a relationship (as most people do), you are pretty much assured you will not find your soulmate.
Also to find a soulmate, you cannot force the relationship. A person in a midlife crisis often rushes the process of finding /keeping a partner to heal their crisis. You need to have some inner peace within your spirit, so your internal conflicts don’t mismatch you to the wrong person.
An interesting truth is people match themselves first relative to their issues/insecurities and then secondly to their strengths. Since in weakness a person avoids personal issues, it means also avoiding those who can help face those insecurities. So until first addressing and slowly removing personal insecurities, it isn’t easy to see the people who would truly be a soul companion to us. Soulmates are rarely the white knight that saves us from our problems. Rather soul partners help us grow up to be strong enough to deal with our problems.
Soul companions and soulmates are those people who match to our strengths.
If you are busy just struggling to overcome personal issues, you will also be too preoccupied to spot your true soul companions.
How to Help Your Partner?
If at all possible start by simplifying your relationship to being a true friend. Releasing judgment from your partner isn’t always easy nor possible, but it’s a great starting baseline. Read more in Helping Partners Change.
How do You Find Your SoulMate?
People in midlife transformation are often dating again for the first time in a long while in their life. I have written another article How to find your SoulMate to help people connect to a soul mate rather than just finding a new midlife relationship.
To explore relationships check out our healing and relationship section of the site.
Discover you don’t have to be alone, in figuring out how to improve your relationship.