Why do couples in their 40s feel a sense of inadequacy and how to combat those feelings?

Why do couples in their 40s feel a sense of inadequacy and how to combat those feelings?

The 4th decade of life isn’t as easy as people always say it is. Although, by the time people are 40, they are emotionally and financially settled in their lives with their family and careers. But the time after 40 also raises serious questions in people’s mind regarding the security of their future, their family life and the life of their kids. Usually couples in their 40s have children in their teenage or college going children. When a couple celebrates their 20th or 25th anniversary, their children are all grown up and can handle decisions by themselves. The couple tends to think they have done their part in raising their children and whatever happens, the children won’t need immediate support from their parents like they did 10 or 15 years ago. So basically, along with the immediate rise of cardiac illnesses associated with people in the 40s, couples face the classic ‘empty nest syndrome’ as they grow up.

Empty nest syndrome

Every child grows up and wants to live life by themselves. But parents will never admit that their kids have grown up and can lead their own lives without any interference from their parents. Parents are used to help out and guiding their kids whenever possible and most of the times, as the world advances, the kids want to go away for further education or for jobs, so the parents cannot do much for the kids and that makes them feel inadequate. After a while, kids get busy with their lives or get on with their jobs and make decisions without consulting their parents. Now that the kids are making a life for themselves and earning well, they will do things for themselves without asking permission. At first, it’s only about buying a new cell phone for them and next comes buying a new car. For a while, it goes on and later the parents notice that their children are capable of finding their life partner and talk about marriage as well. It’s a gradual process and doesn’t happen overnight so such kind of feelings settle in gradually. In the beginning, it will be the slight privacy that the kids would be maintained from the parents and then it all begins to unfold.

Aging process

Once any couple is in their 40s, they know that they aren’t getting any younger. Along with a set of health problems like cardiac issues and arthritis, cosmetic issues come out in the open as well. This happens in women more than men because women, since a very early age, are taught to appreciate their looks and take care of their skin. Now suddenly they have to combat with wrinkles and skin aging problems so they aren’t quite sure about what to do. Men will start gaining weight and losing hair, which makes them feel unattractive. Once a couple has completed a few years of their marriage, they no longer appreciate each other or are as excited to go out on dates as they were when they initially got married. That makes a wife or a husband feel that their partner doesn’t love them anymore or isn’t attracted to them physically. This sets in problems like insecurity among the couples and the marriage becomes tough. In such situations, the married couple should focus more on their relationship as a married couple because since the children are growing up, they will need the parents less and less.

No need for couple therapy

It’s really hard to get the same spark in a relationship as it was in the initial few years of marriage. But a couple can do a lot to spend time with each other. Since the children are grown up and can look after themselves, the couple can go out for romantic dinners or take a trip outside for a few days. Spending some quality time alone with your partner can really help matters. Once the couple starts doing little things for each other like cooking for your partner or buying simple presents, it can really improve a relationship drastically. It makes your partner feel that you are actually interested in making things better and you are making your partner feel better. This prevents the marriage from hitting a rocky patch and keeps the partners in love even when they have spent 25 years with each other.

The solutions to saving your marriage, even after 25 years is pretty easy, but you will have to commit to your partner and make your efforts towards making them feel special no matter what. At first, they would be a bit hesitant or reluctant to make efforts, but then if they notice that you are approaching them with good intentions, it will work in your favor.

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