Are you at a place in your life where you have thoughts like,
- “I want something different in life.”
- “I’m scared of getting old and I’m going to hold on to my youth!”
- “Is this the job I want to do for the rest of my life?”
- “Am I happy in my marriage?”
Many of these questions and ideas seem cliche’ but they are very real feelings for both men and women as they go through different stages of their lives. We often hear about the 40 year old man who leaves his wife with a much different, younger woman and pulls up in his red convertible corvette to pick up the kids for the weekend. That’s not original, but it does happen. But mid-life crises happen in many different ways and can cause anxiety, stress, and even heartache in all parties involved! Mid-life crises do not discriminate against sex – both men and women go through it, but in very different ways.
Male children have a different way of responding to counseling. Many boys (and men) show up to counseling because they feel forced to do so. Parents, wives, or children may have influenced or even given ultimatums for them to go to counseling to get help. This automatically puts them on the defensive. Men have been taught from a young age to keep their feelings bottled up and that, “Boys don’t cry,” or “Stand up and shake it off.” Now they come to counseling and are expected to simply open up and share all their feelings with a stranger? This can be difficult for anyone, let alone someone who has been made to believe that sharing feelings is a weak behavior. Boys have also been shown to respond better to “hands-on” and “activity-oriented” counseling.
At Thriveworks, we want to help move beyond these stereotype boundaries. Our counselors and coaches know that men require different counseling methods and treatments than women. Men have similar problems than women, but process it differently. If you are having some of the following symptoms, you may want to see a counselor or coach to work through them and set some goals for yourself:
- Desiring to quit a job.
- Desiring to leave a long-term relationship.
- Not recognizing the man in the mirror.
- Change of habits.
- Constant concern about appearance.
- Desire to have spiritual or religious connections.
- Loss of sleep.
- Changing eating patterns.