Fran Whiting says her husband is displaying some worrying behaviour, and breaking the unwritten contract between couples.
Fran Whiting says her husband is displaying some worrying behaviour, and breaking the unwritten contract between couples.

My husband is having a mid-life crisis

I think my husband is having a midlife crisis.

Now, when I say "I think" he's having a midlife crisis, it's because I'm not entirely sure.

He hasn't done any of the usual things associated with men experiencing this type of existential meltdown.

He hasn't, for example swapped our very sensible family wagon for a Harley-Davidson and a tattoo that says, "Blood of a Slave, Heart of a Warrior", or got a girlfriend named Boom Boom Trixie.

What he is doing is getting fit. Really fit - I tell you, the man is going from Dad-bod to Dad-God before my very eyes.

He's swimming, he's running, he's boxing, he's going to something called 12 Round, and what I want to know is why?

I mean I didn't turn 40, or all right 45, fine 50 - and suddenly take off for Mykonos to be seduced by a swarthy but charming owner of a seaside taverna, now did I?

No, I did not, and I'll tell you why. Because that is the plot of Shirley Valentine I have just realised I am describing, and not my life at all.

Colin Firth as Mr Darcy in Pride and Prejudice.
Colin Firth as Mr Darcy in Pride and Prejudice.

The point is, I didn't turn 40, oh all right 45, fine 50 - honestly you people are so picky - and run off with Colin Firth, now did I? No, and I think we all know that I could have; I just chose not to. Because my marital vows mean something to me. Because I would never rip my family apart like that. And because I have never met him.

You know what I did do? I wrote a book. That's right, that's how crazy I went. I just went wild. Woo hoo! Thousands of mind-numbing hours sitting at a desk while the lifeblood drained from my body and I tried to think of linking chapters.

But John? He's out there pumping iron. Getting arm muscles. And a washboard stomach. And toned calf muscles. And like I said, I want to know why, because this was not in the contract.

You all know the contract I'm talking about don't you? The unwritten one between all couples, the one which contains many unspoken yet agreed upon truths and rules, including the one that says: "One partner shalt not suddenly get hotter than the other one without prior warning/permission". John has broken this rule as well as the one where both parties quietly agree to go to seed together after 50.

The thing is, I don't mind really - unless he's got some gym bunny tucked away in her Lululemons behind the step machine that I don't know about - but I am a little annoyed.

Because you know what this means, don't you?

It means that I have to step up. It means I have to get equally as fit as we are now apparently going to be spending our middle age years hiking and bragging about our blood pressure, instead of sitting on the couch and complaining about our children never visiting us, which is where I thought we were heading.

Now John is heading in a totally other, and unexpected, direction and I fear it is only a matter of time before he comes home in neon green bike shorts. Look, I'm actually happy to go for walks with him, I'm happy to puff my way up the odd mountain or two, and I may even re-join the gym - only this time do what other people are rumoured to, and actually attend, but that, my friends, is where I draw the line.


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