Reading: #105: Reinventing the Definition of Midlife as “Middlescence” (Barbara Waxman)

#105: Reinventing the Definition of Midlife as “Middlescence” (Barbara Waxman)

August 14 2020

For years I’ve been saying that midlife is the same as adolescence — but in reverse. Your body is doing strange things, you can’t stop crying, you notice all your relationships are changing, you no longer know who you are or what you want, and you don’t know why.  Life-stage expert, gerontologist, and author, Barbara Waxman, decided to make that observation official with her book “The Middlescence Manifesto: Igniting the Passion of Midlife.”  “In 1900 life expectancy was 47,” she tells me. “Now, it’s in your 80s. The [extra] years are not at the end of life, the decrepit years, but are showing up in the middle markers. It starts at 45.”  Waxman says, “women gain power in Middlescence…[have] more agency. They want to do what [they] care about and care less about what others think.” Waxman believes now is the “time to discern what you care about…so you can show up with a powerful ‘yes!’”