POST 50

How To Know For Sure You're Having A Midlife Crisis

Skip the red Corvette.

Since 65 has been proclaimed the new middle age, we thought we'd bump up the signs of the new -- later-in-life -- midlife crisis. 

1. If someone asks you when you are retiring, your reaction is to immediately call your hair colorist for an emergency appointment.

Full retirement age in the U.S. is now 66. It makes sense since we are healthier and living longer than we did decades ago. The majority of workers would like to retire by 65, but only those making $100,000 or more expect that they'll do so. Collecting Social Security before you turn 66 will mean you will get a lower monthly benefit for the rest of your life. Don't do it -- collect early or think coloring your hair will make a difference.

 

2. You have no interest in a red Corvette, but you've been thinking it could be time to trade in the mini-van.

Nah, better keep it. There is no sign that your adult kids are leaving home anytime soon. More young adults are living with their parents now than they did during the recession, according to U.S. Census data. The share of 18-to-34-year-olds living with their parents was 31.5 percent as of March 2015, up from 31.4 percent last year, according to a Commerce Department report. In 2005, just 27 percent of young adults lived with their parents. And as for that smell in the mini-van? Check for old soccer socks under the third-row seats, which is where most of them go to die.

 

3. While you lack energy to have an affair, you fantasize about being married to a foot masseur who rubs your feet all day long without complaint.

Massages in general make us feel better, more relaxed. And studies have shown that as we age, they take on a greater role as pain relievers. Plus, can we just all admit it? Massages feel good, especially when they involve our feet. And especially when they are given without complaint. Training the cat to do it hasn't worked out.

4. You believe that wearing yoga pants to the supermarket is a dream come true.

Our mothers had something called "house dresses," loose-fitting smocks that mom would slip into as soon as she walked in the door after running errands. But for the errands, she would dress up. Yoga pants may be the best fashion statement to come down the pike in decades. And while you still may feel the need to put on makeup when you are buying broccoli, slipping on yoga pants makes up for it all.

Yoga pants are a gift from G-d. You will wear them everywhere -- except maybe to an actual yoga class -- and not care a whit what your daughter says. Frankly, we hope to be buried in them.

5. You got super-excited about the Desert Trip concert, until you read the part about camping.

With visions of Woodstock dancing in your head, your first thought was how great would it be to go to Desert Trip and hear the Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan and Paul McCartney with people who are old enough to remember when they were on "The Ed Sullivan Show." Or better still, people old enough to remember when Bob Dylan walked off the "The Ed Sullivan Show" in 1963 over censorship. Ah, the good old days.

But then the reality sets in. You really can't handle crowds anymore. And camping for one night is fun, sort of, but you are a zombie when you don't get a good night's rest, which is to say, most nights. Who needs the desert heat? Will there be shade? How far away is the parking? What are the bathrooms like? What if someone passes you a joint? Is it legal, not legal, who can remember anymore?

When a younger person asks if you are going to Desert Trip -- already being called "Boomerstock" -- you wonder aloud whether Netflix or Amazon Prime will have a Desert Trip documentary. Yeah, who needs it?

6. You have no interest in jumping from an airplane.

Can we just say it: Those people who jump from planes when they are 100 or whose dentures fall out mid-jump may claim they have no regrets, but many of us think it's just plain crazy. At 65, you no longer care about proving your indestructibility. In fact, at 65, you know quite well that you are actually very destructible. Bucket lists are more likely to include things like "become a grandma" than "try skydiving."

 

 

7. The desire to date someone half your age has been replaced with the desire to date someone who doesn't mind driving at night.

OK, that's a bad joke. Dating is stressful at any age. It's important to know what you are really looking for and find someone who wants the same thing. Casual sex is fine as long as it is truly casual for all parties involved. And as much as the idea of older people having sex makes younger people squirm, sex is still a part of most of our lives. But so is companionship, affection, feeling appreciated, and having best friends around to share things with.

 

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