Mid-Life Crisis Clusters Found In 4 US Cities

By ACSH Staff — Feb 05, 2016
Considering hair plugs? Craving a convertible? According to the research from a real estate website, where a middle-aged man lives could play a huge role in how he specifically perceives, adopts and manages a midlife crisis.
shutterstock_224228110 Midlife Crisis via Shutterstock

An unsuspecting affinity towards sports cars. The subtle, yet growing urge to trade in your lovely wife for a newer model. And those erectile-dysfunction commercials you used to fast forward through? Well, now they're really starting to pique your interest.

If you re a guy who's found himself in any of these situations, you could be on the verge or even in the full-blown midst of a midlife crisis. And according to a recent poll, where you live could play a major role in how you specifically perceive, adopt and deal with this important life transition.

The poll, released in early February by the real estate website Estately, evaluated five key elements considered typical of a midlife crisis, to get an estimate of the number of men facing this life-changing period, and where they live among the nation's largest metropolitan areas.

The elements include:

  • 1) the number of online searches for hair loss treatments
  • 2) Craigslist ads for men seeking younger women
  • 3) motorcycle purchases by Facebook users ages 33 to 55
  • 4) the city's ratio of divorce lawyers to marriage counselors
  • 5) the percentage of new convertible sales in the area

What they discovered was this sort of midlife-crisis-pattern-of-contagion. Or, that clusters of arguable balding, middle-aged, motorcycle-loving men tend to congregate in certain geographical regions across the U.S.

Of the country's top 25 most densely populated cities, Dallas was ranked No.1, with Atlanta, Phoenix and Miami slotting closely behind to take the midlife-crisis-cluster-cake. These cities ranked highest when its individual scores, based on the five indicators, were combined to create a composite measure.

Chicago, New York and Los Angeles were not far behind coming in fifth, sixth and seventh in the poll, respectively.

Now, the term mid-life crisis might seem harmless or even fictitious. But it s actually a complex and serious issue that's garnered much attention from the psychological and behavioral scientific community.

According to their paper published in Gerontology, researchers Alexandra M. Freund and Johannes O. Ritter believe that "facing the limitation of the time until death, men in particular are believed to pause from actively pursuing their goals and review their achievements, take stock of what they have and have not yet accomplished, at times taking drastic measures to fulfill their dreams."

That's some pretty deep stuff right there.

We all know that a reciprocal relationship exists between humans and their environment. So, if you find yourself a recently divorced, forty-something, dreaming of that red convertible and longing to pack up from the place you've called home for years, remember be mindful. Although the sunny weather of southern cities Dallas, Tampa and Atlanta might be enticing, this move, upon arrival, could be the straw that breaks the camel's back.

Because you may be distorting something that was once considered a grounded, thoughtful decision, only to make a change into something sleazy, desperate and goodness sakes, worst of all! stereotypical.

(And P.S. if you are keeping that lovely wife of yours, but instead are doing that robotic hair transplant you've seen hawked on infomercials you know, how it's natural and leaves no scars! this crisis applies to you, too.)