• evans says:

    what if u after years of contact now and then the visits are more frequent. Connecting with every1 that meant something in his life. Very cordial when he visits, but sometimes when i phone him to discu hss something he is depressed. He spends most of his time in local pub to give her private time with her children. When he is at her place he spends evenings downstairs imbibing. Then there are weekends and holidays where they have a ball. It is so so mind boggling. But i know through divorce and all previous things that he did, that he still cares and respects me even more than he respects his mom

  • Still Have Hope says:

    My husband ended the affair (again) and came home (again) 2 months ago. He begged to come home. We planned a family trip with our two children and upon return he went into a depression. Within one week he was overwhelmed with the responsibilty of family, he was missing his affair partner, telling me that he loves me, I've got everything that he could want but there's a void in him. He left again. It's been 2.5 years since BD. I have read your website and have learned so much. It seems that I finally have come to grips that I need to 100% let go. He's a cake-eater and what I believe to be a clinging boomerang. He tells me he's sorry, tells me he loves me, loves the kids but when it comes down to it he doesn't have the capacity to give us what we deserve. He's in therapy with a great councillor (which is huge for him). I thought we were reconnecting again over the last few months (dates alone and with kids) but he wasn't being honest about still being in contact with his affair partner.

  • Still Have Hope says:

    My husband and I have been together for almost 20 years. He's my best friend and the love of my life. He has always been my rock and we have always made each other better people. The man that he has become while in MLC is the complete opposite of the man I married. I realise (finally) that I need to let him go. It's the only hope that our marriage has and most importantly it's what's best for me. I know that deep inside my husband is still there. He tells me he loves me, he says I'm the best person he knows, he thanks me for being the best mum to our children. I know someday he will regret these decisions. Its's sad to see such a wonderful person do things that go against everything he believes in. All I can do is live my life, make plans, cry when I need to, pray every minute I can, lean on my friends and be the best mum to my children. I have not lost hope in my husband but I finally realise that he may just never come out of this. I'm struggling with the difference between letting go and still holding on to hope. I'm sure that will come with time. Thank you for this site. it has been amazing.

    • married4eva says:

      WOW!!! I had to re-read this again and again because I thought I wrote this entry. Same exact thing is going on with me. Best friends ( our song is "You're my best friend" by Queen), married 23 years together 26, always been my rock and we made each other better people also. We balanced each other. Everyone envied our relationship. Then, BOOOOM! My life has been turned upside down, he wont even communicate with me. He has stopped talking to our youngest daughter, 20, I believe its because when he talks to her she demands answers from him. Hes so filled with guilt that its just easier to not talk to her. It's a huge mess. Praying every minute of every day for the Lord to break him and bring him home to his family. Not sure what God is doing in his life, but I am grateful for every little blessing. Continue to work on yourself, I am also trying to do this, continue praying and trusting in Gods timing that he is not walking them through this tunnel, but pulling them quickly in a wagon through it. PRAYER WORKS!!!!

      • Jackie says:

        I Just can not believe someone has written my words, thoughts. We have been married for 23 years, 28 together. My rock my sole mate and then yes BOOM as you say married4eva. Some times he will talk to me, ask how I am then he can walk into a room and completely ignore our sons and I. Where has the caring. loving, sensitive man gone??? This has been going on for so long now. The final straw came when I found out he had been seeing women for sexual satisfaction, although not intercourse. This all going on when I lost my job and couldn't give our boys what they asked for for Xmas and not being able to travel to see family, through lack of funds, he was paying these women and sending them gifts. I filed for divorce, so the past few months have been rather sad for I guess not just me, The pain I feel is sometimes unbearable, I can't get my breath when crying. I know I will have to move on, not just for my self, but for our boys. My family live on the other end of the country and although social media has been a life saving tool at 3-4 o'clock in the morning, I feel so alone. I have our two wonderful boys, 1 thing I am so grateful to my husband for. I've told him we will still be there for him as support only when and if he comes out of this midlife crisis, but that he has deeply hurt US. I pray, shout and scream when no one is around. Is God hearing my prayers?????

        • Stillhyrts says:

          I just stumbled on this site and was reading all of these posts. I’m in the same position. Married 22 years. Together 27! Love of each other’s lives. Have a 20 year old daughter who wants nothing to do with him. She hates him and it’s hard and sad to me to watch this. I know he loves her very much but he is putting his girlfriend I think fiancé now before his daughter. We had problems but nothing that could not have been dealt with if he communicated to me. I miss him every day, this is not him. His actions and choices isn’t like him he even said so himself. He had an affair and told her the things he should had been telling me. Looking for some attention. Yet he never told me that he was feeling that he was not happy. Now with all the fighting nagging everything I have done. I have felt that I pushed him away. He’s being controlled by her I feel. Every conversation I feel has to be told to her. It’s like he changed over night. I changed for the better I appreciate him more niw that he’s not here. Everything he has done in the past 2 years has been right on with a MLC monster. I pray every day that he will come back and I also pray for healing and strength for myself and daughter. Lost in life right now. Not sure what I can do. If anything. Any suggestions would help.

          • Rollercoasterider says:

            I could give you a long list of suggestions, but I think it would be better to direct you to the forum: http://mlcforum.theherosspouse.com/index.php.
            Go over there and read the stories others are posting, read the resources and most especially–if you feel comfortable–start your own story thread. Once you have a story thread you qualify for a mentor–OldPilot will ask you if you want one and if you don't answer I will eventually send you a private message asking.
            The first step is detachment–hopefully you have made some progress toward that in the last two years, but if not please don't worry yourself about it; some learn what to do quickly and others find the advice after months or even years. What matters is what you do now.
            Stop nagging and do not react if he tries to incite an argument. You need to protect yourself–emotionally, financially… but you also need to be kind even in the face of Monster–that often shocks Monster! It's a tightrope because while kindness is important, so is staying off the doormat and to do both those things is often a challenge.

            I understand that after a few years during which you may not have known what to do and so you have begged and argued you feel like you've lost your chance. NOOOO that is not the case. Detachment is the first and perhaps most important step and the key to that–and perhaps Standing in general–is mindfulness. Hope is not lost.

  • Still Have Hope says:

    Any advice that those in my situation could offer would be helpful. My husband needs to realise what a life without me is like and I know the distance will be good for me to remove myself from the ups and downs. I am so lucky because I have so much support, I'm active, I have amazing friends and family and my kids are young but loving and wonderful.

    • Rollercoasterider says:

      Yes, your MLCer is a Clinging Boomerang and at 2.5 years past Bomb Drop some are further along than others. Please don't take this continuing cycling as a sign that he won't come through his MLC; it's actually typical for a Clinging Boomerang.
      And you are right about the difference between holding hope and letting-go; that can be confusing because they are in so many ways similar and holding hope is a good thing and yet it may sometimes feel as though that means you are not letting go. Lett Go of the insistence on a specific outcome and trying to control the situation to that outcome, but it's still okay to hold for that outcome. The idea is that letting go can allow the situation to play out without interference which can ironically make things worse. Think if how Oedipus' parents tried to prevent their fate and by doing that they actually created it.

      • Still have home says:

        Thank u for your reply. I am almost certain that he is back with her. I know in his mind he feels like he has to live this out even though he know that it won't last. He has something missing inside of him and of course he thinks that this affair partner will help. the one thing I have never done is to completely let him go. He is a massive cake eater and now I realize that it is time for him to feel what life without me is like. We have two young children so it is hard to go no contact but I told him not to contact me unless it is absolutely necessary. I am planning my summer with friends and family and just letting him see this through. I hope that he wakes up from this but I realize that I can't count on that. I am now 100% focusing on my health and my kids well being. My marriage and my husband are in Gods hands. I will continue to read here everyday as it is comforting to hear from people who understand.

  • Terry1157 says:

    I'm loosing hope as well. After he dumped the OW, she text me all the details of there affair. At first he came around acting like he was so sorry about everything and a week later he backed out telling me that he wasnt in love with me anymore. He slowed down and eventually stopped all together calling, coming by on the weekends ect. I dont hear anything from him at all unless I call him. Its been that way for 4 months now. I really feel if I didnt call him I would never hear a word from him. Sometimes he is somewhat nice and sometimes he isnt. He has been out of the house for 1 year now and I dont have any hope of a return. He has moved on to someone else I feel and doesnt want anything to do with me. I am tired of him not being a man and sit down and talk to me or even write a letter so that I can move on with my life. I believe he is trying to drag this out for 5 years until he retires I really dont know what to think. All I know is if I had the money to file for divorce I would have done it a long time ago. Tired of him talking to me like I am nothing. All I ever wanted from him was a conversation. Even when he said he didnt love me I asked him for a divorce or separation and he hung up on me. Just wait to see if he leaves his apartment next month because his lease is up. If we're meant to b together then we will, divorce or no divorce. Its my time now.

    • sofia says:

      I understand. Its seems so selfish that someone who knows how much pain they are causing can’t even have a conversation. My husband left me six months ago and has been all over the board. Coming home for a couple days then leaving, being angry, being sad, confiding in me problems with his work but I can’t express myself without getting cut off contact and/or angry comments. He recently told me he was going to file. I’ve tried to back off and let go but its been so hard and I keep making mistakes. We’ve been married 15 years and have 5 kids. I’m in agony, suicidal, all the while trying to be this perfect stander..I get strength from god .. I pray for my strength but I feel weary.

  • Drock says:

    I wonder how many of these Midlifers are on AntiDepressants…

    Google "Marriages Destroyed by SSRI's" There is an adverse reaction to these drugs that seem to mimic, or even perhaps start a MLC.

    Please check it out.

    • Angi says:

      My husband started anti depressant, started drinking and wanting pot, and 6 weeks later said he loved me but wasn’t in love with me and didn’t want to be married anymore, didn’t want the responsibilities of marriage and left me for some one younger, she is the age of one of our sons!

  • Anita says:

    Sofia, I hope you can focus on the things you have and the things you can control. I am learning to, slowly. I gave him unconditional love, forgiveness, deep love and I'm thinking heck, if it means so little, if he's such a flake. I wish I had someone like me. I am slowly deciding that all of that unconditional love, energy, hard work and commitment should go to ME. I am alone without children and plan to give myself a family, a nice home with painted walls, vacations and the good things in life. Heck, if I have been giving so much to him, I may as well give it to myself. I am a faithful, loving, woman who believes in God. I have prayed for reconciliation, told him divorce was too fast and hasty, said he is depressed, and know God can still give me a miracle. At this point it IS in God's hands, but I am beginning to detach and disengage from the web of lies, flakiness, superficial BS. I won't waste my entire life on this man when I can count on myself for happiness, with God's love!

  • Nicola says:

    My husband changed ten months ago into someone I didn't recognise- his actions went from being loving towards me to one of constant criticism . I believed the change in him was all my fault and felt I was in a living hell. Bomb drop six weeks ago – he cried told me he always loved me but wanted to self destruct his whole life and run away. He has been having an affair for six months , walked out on his job, spent money he doesn't have including debts of over £12,000. His reason he is scared of his own mortality doesn't want to face the future of getting old- wants to be surrounded by young children again , our children have now grown up. and basically focuses on the past – my friends tell me he is in a mid life crisis and he will come back as they know he still loves me but feel so confused and hurt I don't know what to think or feel anymore, apart from I know I still love him despite everything.

  • Katy says:

    Wow! Fascinating stuff. I met a man online two years ago. At the time, I was separated and now divorced. I fell in love with him. We broke up. He said he was going back to his wife! Five months later, he returned to me, saying they had split up. This time, although my feelings for him renewed and got stronger, I didn't fully trust him. Nine months later, he left me for another woman. Nine months later still, he left this woman to go back to his wife!!! Finally, I fell out of love with him for good because the in-between woman posted photographs to his fb site after their split which showed their life behind closed doors. This would I am sure have been to poison all enduring and/or past, present or future intentional relationships from hurt and spite. Is this man MLC or narcissist? I see an over-emotional man hiding behind a mask who needs the reflection of an adoring partner to keep his ego afloat in order to operate on any level. The problem is that he then destroys the adoring partner once he takes them for granted and then moves on to a new partner in a never-ending cycle. I certainly see his behaviour as predatory – but maybe it's unintentionally predatory since he merely needs new supply to survive? How to break the cycle? How does a partner take him back, knowing that he has caused them such a massive public humiliation? If I were this MLCer, I would crawl under the nearest rock and hide myself in shame. Maybe this is how he feels, but has some deep-down issue that he can't confront and come to terms with which causes him to behave in extremis all the time? A man who is in survival jeopardy will do crazy things. I don't need this circus in my life and therefore won't return. He contacted me prior to going back to his wife. But I blasted him for the cruelty he dished out. Reading these articles made me see that the cruelty might be incidental to his lack of acceptance of himself causing him to act crazily rather than intentional cruelty or even the result of a mere lack of consideration. I see he is perhaps desperate to find solace from the pain he feels himself. Unfortunately, he causes others pain while he seeks to mitigate his own. His wife took him back and bragged about it, as if he were some prize. He is no prize, just a nightmare hollow self in search of a support mechanism.

  • Diane Marie Szytz says:

    What a great article. I am 5 months into my husbands bomb drop . Learning more & more each day. Thanks for helping me make some sense out if a totally senseless situation.

  • Tonya says:

    Wow!!! Reading these posts is like reading my life!!! It’s only been a month since mine dropped the bomb he wanted a divorce! We have been married 20 years and I’m totally destroyed! The thing is I think his has been going on this whole year. He started talking to another woman back in April and had an affair over the summer and denied until a few days ago. They still talk so I know he probably has plans to be with her after our divorce. He tells me constantly he loves me with all his heart but wants to start a new life and find himself. This just isn’t him! We have had a great marriage. I Don’t know if I can handle seeing him with someone else. Should I give him what he wants and back off? I really don’t have a choice. He makes no since. Tells he wants us to beat friends still and that he wants to see me everyday and still take care of us. I just don’t understand if he loves me so much why leave and get a divorce. Ugh so confused but I do believe he is in MLC. 2-7 years is way to long if this is what it is!!

    • Connie says:

      No one knows how long it takes in MLC my husband took about 3 years. I’m so sorry about what you are going thru but nothing can derail this so U must control what U can by taking care of you. I had a great therapist & I exercised for 6 months. I mostly took the time to get to know myself better. Don’t get me wrong I was lonely & did a lot of crying but i made it thru.

  • miss confused says:

    my partner boyfriend of 17 years who I thought was my best friend we do everything together got so much in common hit me with a bomb in nov I found a phone number on his phone and yes he is having a affair at first I was begging and crying for him to see sense but now I have changed the focus onto me I am ignoring him not giving him no attention he cant make it out he has changed his attitude slightly but I know he is seeing the ow behind my back I am sorting out my finances then I will get rid of him sad but true its over once they cheat you never trust.he cant make it out whle im so cool about the situation its all the lies that he has told as well he is having a mid life crisis for sure he has all the symptoms he is aged 41 devastating for me to accept and so very sad I also think he has depression midlife crisis is 75 percent depression he does drink and has taken party drugs .I am just so confused one min he is saying that he loves me then he is cheating behind my back.i feel like I lost a left leg frightened scared confused angry

  • Connie says:

    Never left home no cheating. Clinger had all symptoms in beginning about three years so many touch & goes. Finally he’s steady. We spend time together he is a lot like his old self but we R better. The other day I read to him from my diary he cried. We R finding out way back.

    • Kimberly says:

      Oh Connie that is so great to hear that you were able to hang in there dispute all that heartache… You are so strong!

  • margaret says:

    I was wondering, most articles state that midlife crisis lasts 2-5 years, but when do you consider the actual start of it? some website say it is right after bomb drop and other websites state that it starts right after a death of a parent or other traumatic event takes place. Ca you please clarify? Also, when my husband of 25 years dipped the bomb, he had already been in an affair for almost a year, so would that mean he was almost half way through replay? He had three deaths in the family two years prior to bd.

    • Rollercoasterider says:

      The timeline ranges 3 – 7 years Jim Conway says 2 – 7 as an average. I recently revised what I say to MLC ranging (not averaging) from 3 – 7 years, with 3-5 being more of the average.
      The confusing part about MLC is that both things you are reading are true in a sense. MLC does begin before Bomb Drop and it often begins with a trigger 12 – 36 months before Bomb Drop and the death of a parent is a common trigger. The confusion is the start of MLC versus the start of an MLC time-clock. The CLock begins at Bomb Drop. The stuff before Bomb Drop is often unnoticed–or only noticed in hindsight or at least only noticed in hindsight as being significant and it can take years. Then why do I say the trigger is 12 – 36 months before Bomb Drop?
      I din't really know. It could be that is the time in those where we recongize a clear trigger; there are those where we do not know what the trigger was if there was one. Or it could be that the trigger comes along when a person is ready for it to push them to the next level, but they have been in early levels already–early levels which might go nowhere.
      The stuff before Escape & Avoid (Replay is an aspect of High-Energy Escape & Avoid) is the same if it is a transition or a crisis, it is Escape & Avoid that designates it as a crisis.

    • Rollercoasterider says:

      The start of the affair may not be the start of Replay–we have many that start before. No, it would not mean he is halfway through Replay and what is halfway through Replay anyway? Escape & Avoid has a big range of time. I think HeartsBlessing originally listed it as averaging 2 years, but that is not what we think anymore. I cannot speak for her, but I thought she said putting times on her descriptions was a mistake.
      Escape & Avoid is the longest and and could last years.


      • Margaret says:

        Thank you for your quick reply! Still very confusing stuff!! Looking back for a at least 2 years if not more to BD my husband was clearly in denial and his anger was so intense along with heavy drinking, I didn't know what to do, but at the time I remember just thinking that something was definitely not right with him. He was saying horrible things, to both me and our adult children, we couldn't stand to be around him. A year after his father died both of our daughters graduated. One graduated from high school, the other from college within the same week of one another. Our oldest daughters college graduation was only 20 minutes from our home and he didn't even want to go to his daughters graduation , he wanted to go to the horse races instead. When he finally did end up going to her graduation, instead of talking to his family, he was mingling with the college kids. this Happened early last May, then bomb drop followed in August, move out in November. He broke up with the OW four times between July and Jan. It was crazy. So would I count those 2 years of denial and anger in the MLC years time line?
        Also, I read something about the traveler, the MLCer traveling to several different ecosystems to rest and gain their strength on the ledge. For the past 3-4 months my husband has been traveling all over outside of the country, and the US and he rarely tells anyone where he is going, even his work. When he gets back he looks beat up, worn down, and depressed.
        He and his adult children haven't seen one another since Christmas, except for an occasional text that he sends,. and my kids ignore.
        Just hanging on to my faith, and so very grateful for the support of my beautiful children, and great friends.
        Blessings to you and to all who have to go through this.

        • Rollercoasterider says:

          Typically you start the time-clock at Bomb Drop. But it does sound like you were experieincing some severe and overt symptoms well before Bomb Drop. This could change that, but it's not a science.

          The MLC years time line is not the same as the clock–the clock starts running at Bomb Drop. Yes, he was in MLC during those two years, but that does not mean time was moving forward on his crisis.

          Think of it like a train station.
          The stuff before Bomb Drop happens in the station; Bomb Drop is when they board the train and it starts moving. The station is not moving and some wait there for a short period and others for much longer.

  • Margaret says:

    Its me again, forgot one more thing. April 2013 our family traveled to Europe for the first time. we stayed in apartment type villa with two separate living spaces. He stayed upstairs in a locked apartment the entire trip, never wanting anyone including the kids with him. He also was very distant to everyone on the trip. When we arrived back home, for many nights on and off for the next year he would lock our bedroom door before I went to bed. Would this be escape and avoid leading into replay?

    • Rollercoasterider says:

      Escape & Avoid is Replay.
      Jim Conway called the stage Replay, I call it Escape & Avoid and then split that into two types:
      High-Energy Replay
      Low-Energy Wallow

      It sounds to me as though you had some clear signals that something was not right with him. Did you do anything about it back then–ask him what was wrong, request counseling, see a counselor or someone on your own…

      • Margaret says:

        No, I didn't really ask him to go to counseling until a month or two before BD, which he refused. I felt as if the entire family had been walking on eggshells around him for the last 4-5 years, before BD. I was just trying to keep my family in one piece, and I honestly didn't know what to do. A year or two before BD, his drinking and anger had become so unbearable that I went to see a counselor, at the time she suggested that I kick him out, but I didn't think that was the answer either, and I didn't want to break up my family.
        After his affair came out in October, my adult children were devestated. Over the years they had always stood by, and loved their father. Even dealing with his anger and his alcoholism. Once they found out about the affair though, they were heartbroken and they don't want him in their lives anymore. After their father moved out, both of my daughters told me that when they were in high school they both had gone to see the high school conceelor and both had separately gone to Alanon, but they didn't tell anyone.

        We are all in a much better place now, we try not to dwell on things, we are happy, we pray for him, but we are moving on with our lives. We have each other to love and to lean on! I am grateful, I am a stander and I know God is watching over me, my children, and my husband.

  • Carol says:

    My mid life crisis ex husband destroyed us and even abandoned our beautiful dog! I don’t want him Back so much pain!

  • Carol says:

    My MLCer went NUTS at age 50 I could see the changes immediately! It got so bad he started bringing her s affairs right through our family home and marital bed. I have two kids aged 15 and 11 that have personally witnessed the hell also and we are now divorcing. I cannot stand his lying, cheating face any longer. I have been fighting him now for two years it’s costing a fortune and still he takes zero responsibility for anything. I think part of the problem is mental illness and it runs in his family.

  • Jperry says:

    When vows are taken you promise through sickness and in health. Been married 20 and together 25 and he is text-book MLC. Felt him withdrawing over the last couple of years but he is an incredibly deeply introverted and very aloof man not letting anyone in. He dropped the bomb one year ago. He came back, then left again. Got the motor and now is with the younger woman 13 years junior
    (They have SO much in common, they run together ) I have kept my dignity. Behind closed doors I have struggled… a lot However I have chosen to move forward and get on with my life for the sake of our children. He has lost his way in this MLC fog and he isn't the man I married. I am no contact mode now in light of the affair and I can tell this has thrown him, he's always relied on me to be around but I did tell him that infidelity was something we can't come back from. (Secretly I could be pursued) He now has to paddle his own canoe. It is the perfect storm that no marriage can endure. Drifting apart and taking each other for granted and I am in full on menopause but strangely our sex life was epic even right down to a few days ago before he announced his feelings for another. Just like he can't make sense of his life right now I can't control the hot flushes along with the moods of our13-year-old daughter. My intention is to maintain a strong and healthy relationship with my husband and work on myself. I know he is in there somewhere and if it's meant to be it will happen again for us. If it doesn't, then I've had 25 years with a most wonderful man and I will always have a very deep connection with him that no other woman will ever have.

  • >