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Is this normal - midlife crisis??

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by jasonbraatz, Dec 20, 2002.

  1. jasonbraatz


    Oct 18, 2000
    Oakland, CA
    So, my dad has always been a providing dad first and everything else a distant second, not having anything that he really did himself for fun. us kids were his entertainment/source of happiness.

    i'm now a month away from 21, and my brothers 18, so while he still is a great dad, he doesn't have to do as much in terms of parenting.

    edit: he's 56.

    so lately i've been noticing a change. he actually went to a doctor to fix his sleep problems. he bought a motorcycle (not a harley either, a 1982 Suzuki GS1100E - FAST!!!!), and THIS is the weird thing: after a while trying to get my brother to quit smoking, it looks like he's adopted the "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em" philosophy and has started smoking himself. while that's not really BAD (i'm sure he'll get over it) i'm just wondering...why?

    so, has anyone gone through similar things? did they pass? is it just a realization that you can do what YOU want vs what's best for your kids now? do you overreact a little at first?

    i'm not really worried, but i'm worried that this is perhaps the tip of the iceberg?

  2. My father is 56 also, he's always had lots of toys. Multiple cars/trucks (mostly nice) and golf equipment. Which explains my need for bass equipment, cars, and motorcycles (just bought my second, buying another one after the first of the year).

    Maybe try to hang out with him, and realize that he's finally feeling comfortable enough to have fun. Go get a mid 80's demi-sportbike. Maybe a yamaha seca 550-750 or similar bike (GPz?), and go for rides with him. I can't say the smoking is a good thing, but it's forgiveable. Sounds like you and your brother are old enough to start fending for yourselves, time to be a buddy maybe? Sounds like he's raised his kids okay. Let him know I guess.

    GS1100E's are really cool. Not silly fast, but a very good standard sport. Would make a great cafe racer project! Strip it down, put a bikini fairing on it, and a cafe/dirt tracker rear section, some different handlebars, take off the passenger pegs and go blasting around. Mmmm.
  3. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    could be a crisis, or it just could be a renewed vigor and zest to make sure he lives his own life as full as he can. :)
  4. He's sure full of piss and vinegar these days:D :p
  5. RobinL


    Dec 9, 2002
    Merrick, NY, USA
    I'll be hitting 56 next month, and my midlife crisis manifests itself by this crazy urge I have to take up bass again after nearly 40 years. My wife thinks I should be taking more interest in redoing the kitchen and bathroom, but she's the one who rejects all my suggestions, so I've decided to leave that to her.

    BTW, I quit smoking 14 years ago and have no desire to start again.
  6. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    ...time matters. And the less time you have to do the things you want.

    The best advice I could give you is....Questions. For your dad. Not delivered in a 3rd degree method, but over the course of conversation(s). Just to see where he's at.

    He'd probably get a kick out of chattin' it up with you youngin's.
  7. iplaybass


    Feb 13, 2000
    Houston, TX
    My dad is 60, and I'm 17. Don't worry about it, these things happen. Right now my father is planning on buying a new 350Z, and he's getting ready to retire. He just bought us a new house also. He also plays golf like a madman now, seems like its all he ever does. I think when you get that old, you just want to enjoy things, because you don't know how much longer you have.

    EDIT: On a side note, the 350Z is more the continuation of a stopped trend than a whole new one. When my dad got his first engineering job, he bought a '67 GTO. His next car was his '76 Datsun 280Z(still in the garage), and then for some reason he got an Explorer. I assume he thinks its time to go back to the sports cars.
  8. After providing for his family all these years, he probably just realized that you guys are well able to take care of yourselves in all departments. He also probably realized that now there's time for him.

    I don't want to this to sound like a weepy tale, that's not the point here. Hang out with him as much as you can. You'll probably discover you have more in common with him than you could ever imagine. The reason I say this is that my old man died when he was 56 and I was 21. There's a lot of times we got beat out of together. I'm just glad for the dozen or so times I went fishing with him. True story.

    Seize the day.

  9. Everyone needs some kind of escape...

    From what? You may ask?

    I'll tell you what. From being

    Practical and responsible all the time.

    Your Dad just feels the need to do something fun, something that symbolizes that he is in charge of his own life, something to escape a little bit.

    I wouldn't worry unless it was something that is self-destructive (gambling, adultery, lotsa drugs... etc.)
  10. LoJoe


    Sep 5, 2002
    Concord, NC USA.
    Speaking as an old geezer of 45, it may just be like my case where it took that long before I felt like I could finally take the time and FINALLY HAD THE MONEY to do the fun things I had given up or skipped earlier in life when that thing called responsibility got in the way. 25 years ago I was stuck driving 10-15 year old clunker cars and playing guitars made out of plywood. When marriage and kids came along, there was even less time and money for "Fun things". We lived hand to mouth, paycheck to paycheck. Now after marrying off one kid and having the others growing up just fine, I have the time. More importantly, after 21 years of climbing the corporate ladder with the same company, I HAVE THE CASH!! Now for fun, I play bass in a band, and I drag race that Mustang Cobra you see over on the left under my name. Just like a young hot rod nut, I modify it and I take it to the track and run it against guys half my age or younger. Yeah my wife thinks I'm nuts, and my employees think I am too, but it's a friggin blast and I can now afford to fix the things that I break on it so why not? I define a midlife crisis as when we try to prove to the world and ourselves that we aren't getting too old to have fun, to have a sense of adventure, and can still get a fine looking lady to smile back at us at a redlight. Maybe he is having one, or maybe he just always wanted a screaming fast motorcycle and this was finally his chance. Like someone else said, unless he wants to start dropping acid like his generation did in the 60's, let him have his fun! Can't explain the smoking though. That's a new one on me! :D

    Here's my midlife crisis in living color:


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