Third of men admit to having a midlife crisis
By Lucy Waterlow
It may be a cliche but a third of men in their forties and fifties have admitted to splashing out on a sports car because they're suffering from a midlife crisis, according to a new survey.
Thirty per cent of the British men polled revealed their behaviour changed noticeably when they were coming to terms with getting old, resulting in impulse purchases, marriage splits and taking up unusual hobbies.
Many of those questioned said they had been through what they saw as a 'classic' midlife crisis in a bid to recapture their youth - with sports cars and motorbikes topping the list of inappropriate buys.
Some had even resorted to surgery and others said they sought 'a new wife.'
When asked what triggered their change in behaviour, the top responses were the death of a friend, family member or colleague, divorce and children growing up and leaving home.
Others said they had splashed out after paying off their mortgage - resulting in a larger disposable income - or simply for a desire to have more fun and 'live a little.'
But it wasn't all about splashing the cash, one man revealed he dropped everything so he could follow his favourite Eighties band on their reunion tour. Another said he took a year out to give something back by volunteering for charities.
But aside from desires to have more fun, the survey, carried out on behalf of gentleman's fashion and lifestyle website socked.co.uk, found there was also a sad side to the midlife crisis for some.
About ten per cent of the 1,500 men polled admitted to suffering significant bouts of depression as they came to terms with their mortality.
'This survey's been a real eye-opener,' said Mark Hall of Socked.co.uk. 'What started out as a fun look at the strange things older men do to relive their youth has also shown us the other side of the coin - depression and genuine fear for the future.
'It's not something that's widely reported and reveals how some people have trouble coping with the fact that they're approaching old age.'
However, two thirds of the men questioned said they had never been through any kind of crisis and were 'perfectly happy with my life'.
One respondent confessed: 'I went through all that years ago. I embraced middle age as soon as I left school.'