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The term 'midlife crisis' is sexist

(12 Posts)
OohMavis Sat 08-Oct-16 20:42:07

Had an interesting conversation today with a man who believes that the term 'midlife crisis' is derogatory and misandrist.

The basis of this was that when women of around the same age go off and find new hobbies or interests, learning new skills or sports etc, it's seen as her empowering herself and discovering a new side to her personality; when a man does it it is seen as pathetic and he is made fun of by women and society in general.

Does he have a point?

BIWI Sat 08-Oct-16 20:43:09

No. HTH.

Soubriquet Sat 08-Oct-16 20:43:44

Midlife crisis to me is both sexes

ColdTeaAgain Sat 08-Oct-16 20:44:57

I think he is missing the point of what people mean by midlife crisis.

DonaldStott Sat 08-Oct-16 20:45:08

No, he doesn't have a point.

cardibach Sat 08-Oct-16 20:45:47

'Midlife crisis' doesn't refer to finding new hobbies, though, does it? It refers to buying impractical cars and taking up with younger women. So not the same thing as you describe. Not misandrist, mis-stupidtwatist.

acasualobserver Sat 08-Oct-16 20:46:09

I think men do get their legs pulled a bit on this but I don't think the teasing goes very deep for most of them.

SansasEscape Sat 08-Oct-16 20:48:53

I'm with pp. Its more agist than sexist, both sexes get those comments.

AllPowerfulLizardPerson Sat 08-Oct-16 20:50:00

No, he doesn't have a point.

Because taking the unsettling feelings that might accompany that time of life (and they're not inevitable) and ascribing potential responses to one sex/gender or another shows his limitations.

And I dare say he can find other people with similar limitations for a bit of confirmation bias. Because running off with a younger lover, or buying an unsuitable but flash vehicle are risible for both sexes; pursuing a new creative hobby is not for either.

If you assume that inky one sex is capable of life-affirming growth, then you are being unreasonable. Just as much as assuming only one can make complete prats of themselves.

At any age, come to that.

BowieFan Sat 08-Oct-16 21:14:12

I don't think it's sexist as a term but I understand what he means. If a man goes out and buys a sports car or a motorbike, he's having a midlife crisis. If a woman does the same or goes clubbing, she's "finding herself".

Personally, I think both genders should just be allowed what they want to do with their life without being insulted about their choices.

Chikara Sat 08-Oct-16 21:27:09

I agree with him. It is usually said about men and is intended to belittle them.

I have never heard anyone use it to belittle a woman - whatever she does. There are plenty of other terms used about women of course.

I think it links back to man's role as a provider. He was supposed to work until he retired in some boring but high earning job without complaining. The women sorted the kids and the house out and when he retired he "got under her feet" and she hoped he'd spend time on the golf course or the allotment and take her on holidays or weekends away. He served very little useful purpose.

If he dared to spend the money on himself, do something exciting or different, live a little after the years of being a desk slave, he was ridiculed.

The roles were as constraining for women of course and we have done so much to break free of them and those rigid attitudes. There are still some phrases that show there is a way to go - and I think that "mid-life crisis" is one of them.

dinosaursarebisexual Sat 08-Oct-16 22:36:23

I think the term is bullshit and patronising for both women and men. People do the clichés attached to it at all ages. Bloody hate stupid labels that exist to take the Mickey out of people ( even if they are prats).

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