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Midlife Crisis Forum

The Best Years Bed and Breakfast Inn

Hi. And welcome to the first bed and breakfast inn dedicated exclusively to midlifers and located completely in cyberspace. Whether you've come to have fun (most of us are here at least partly to play), to just get away, to discover and reaffirm your identity and passion in life, to recover from a loss, or to work through a midlife crisis; I'm glad you're here.

So put on some grubbies, take your shoes off, and stroll leisurely through the grounds. You'll meet some of my old friends here (people like Meg, Gordon, my sister D'Lynne and wife Charlotte) and my new ones (people like Susanne, Kathy, Truet, Dan and Alice). There's plenty of opportunity to visit with them and me, so come on in and look around. And be sure to sign the guest registry. We want to know who's walking these trails with us.

Other Guest Pages (April-July 1997) (August-October 1997) (November-December 1997) (January-March 1998)
(April-June 1998) (July-September 1998) (October-December 1998) (January-March 1999)

Guests of Midlife Moments by Date: July-September 1998
(dates posted may not be the same as dates received)

July 3, 1998

Dear Mike

I found your site by chance . I am 51,male, English educated, and have gone through the mill with my life turning cartwheels in the last few years - but the outcome has been better than I would have dared imagine in the dark days. I think the midlife crisis can be truly liberating, with effort and good fortune. It is worth the effort! It is good to find the site and I will call again

Ivor in England


Hi Mike....I've been away for awhile....from your homepage that is.....but I don't know why....I came back and read about three recent articles....about Everybody Else, Our Desires Are Too Weak, and Reverse Cinderella Syndrome.....

I've been really struggling with wanting passion in my life.....fantasizing.....dissatisfied...bored....but I did realize that most likely my fantasies were not necessarily the need for romance in my life but for passion....passion for anything....you're right....the passion is for beauty and everything good in life.....and it's mine for the taking.....

Anyway.....thanks again. I also read your bio about how although you don't live in the big city and you're not a psychologist, but just a person who's been through all of this....and I appreciate that....and I also appreciate the fact that people in small towns go through the same...and that you can find happiness....even in the Texas Panhandle : ).....


My response: July 3, 1998

Ivor--Nice to hear from you, and nice to hear from someone who has navigated successfully the "dark days." Do "call" again.

Nancy--Yep, even in the hot, drrrrrrrry Texas Panhandle ;)

Hey everyone. You'll also find new answers on the Q & A page. Have a happy 4th of July (Sorry, Ivor; I meant no disrespect LOL).--Mike

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July 6, 1998

Hey Mike, I enjoyed your web page. I think I'm also going thru a mid-life crisis. I just turned 36 and can't believe that this is all there is to life. I hate getting up to go to work and I hate coming home to the same old place. You most likely heard this 1000 times before. I thank you very much for having your web page and running, it has helped me look at what my life is like and where it has to go.



Mike, I haven't fully explored this forum, but have read many of the exchanges in Midlife Moments Questions and Answers. I am 39 years old and have been helped to realize the value of my marriage with the help of a correspondent 11 years my junior. I still spent many hours questioning my life and seeking an answer. I have little time to read, but stumbled upon an audio book at the local library that I am enjoying during my commute. It is "Care of the Soul" by Thomas Moore. I was immediately comforted by this book and am learning to see that life is not an analytical puzzle but a mystery that can be learned from, but never "solved". I hope that this book may help some of your readers.

John Davis

My response: July 6, '98

Yep, Mitch; it's a familiar song, one that I've sung too. I do think you'll find some encouragement here, both from the columns and the insightful words of other guests. Glad you found us.

Hey John. Thanks for the tip on the book. I'll try to have a look.

Everyone--Hope your holiday went well (for those of you in the U.S.). Not much to report, except I'm reworking the Extra site to make an interactive portion much more accessible to all. I'm calling it Friends of Best Years. Keep checking back; I hope to have it online soon.

Have a good week and thanks for visiting Best Years.--Mike

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July 11, 1998

Mike, My wife (1956) and I (1958) have had discussions of what the baby boom generations years actually are. Is there a specific number of years or is it just a decade?

Thank You--Steve


Hi Mike, I am doing research on midlife career changes but am having a hard time finding good reference material. Can you steer me in the right direction for some good material? Thanks for your time.


My response: July 11, '98

Hi Steve. The baby boom officially began in 1946 and ended in 1964, and is determined by the unusually high birth rates (and thus babies born) during these years. So who won the argument--your wife or you?

Deborah, I'm not sure what's out there myself. You might look at my Booknook if you haven't already. You can get most of these from your library. Also, there's a book by William Byron called Finding Work without Losing Heart. I would be interested to know what else you may find so we can post it on this site. So, if you don't mind, let me know.

Good luck on your study.

Everyone: You'll find new stuff this weekend on the Q & A page and the Perfectionism discussion.

Important: I will be on vacation for the next couple of weeks. Going to see my daughters in Wyoming and California. Please continue to vist the site, and send your comments. I just won't be able to post them until I get back. Also Susanne Beier is away doing work on her PhD, so she won't be posting answers to questions for a couple of weeks either. That's the bad news. The good news is that about August 1 I will be starting a section called Friends of Best Years, which will allow you to talk daily with other midlifers about areas of interest without having to go through me. Be sure to check this out. Finally, thanks to my friends at Lighthouse Syndications, I now have booklets in hard copy to purchase for yourself or friends. Just click on the adds on this page and others for details.

Have a good week, and thanks for stopping by--Mike

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July 27, 1998

Hello I am enjoying your web site immensely, although I have only just began reading it. I have had a rewarding but challenging career until 3 years ago. I was a counselor with handicapped adults but unfortunately I was assaulted and have been on Worker's Comp ever since. I am divorced and just had my fiftieth birthday! At this stage of my life I have to find an alternative career. Due to physical restrictions imposed by WCB I cannot return to my previous line of work. They insist on training me for an administrative position, yet that is not what I would like to do. I have always been a caregiver and worked with people. Anyway, I won't ramble any longer but just wanted to let you know how such a site can be a source of inspiration to such as myself.

Sincerely, Maggie


Hi I have just began to peruse your site. I am finding it very informative and it's encouraging to know that I am not alone in my struggle. I'm divorced, fiftyish, in the midst of a career change. Non of the previous descriptions of my life are by choice. I have found the tunnel but I'm afraid .....no light yet:-(

Maggie in Ontario


Mike, Thank you for your web site for mid-lifers! At 46, I am experiencing many of the things you write about. It is often scary and always challenging! Letting go is hard. I have been married for almost 26 years, have two grown children, two grandchildren and a nursing degree. I recently quit my job of almost 15 years in nursing because I felt it was time to move on. I couldn't move on until I quit. I'm in transition and it's hard for my husband to understand what in the world I'm doing, but this is the path I must travel! I'm still looking for my passion. I love people and am a very compassionate and passionate person. I would like to go back to school for a counseling degree. I am looking for avenues to make that happen. Right now I feel a void in my life. At times it threatens to swallow me whole! Mid-life challenges me, whether I want the challenge or not! I feel if I want to survive, I have to pick up the baton and run with it. (And that's hard for a slow moving person like me!) Thanks again, Mike!

from a fellow middle-ager!

My response: July 27, '98

Hi Maggie (I'm assuming both messages are yours). I'm so sorry about your ordeal and I know what it feels like to be in the tunnel without light. But you sound to me like a fither and I'm betting you find your light soon.

Hi Fellow Middlie-ager. Sounds like good advice to me. We're cheering for you.

Everyone. Sorry I couldn't post while on vacation,but I'm back and ready to keep you up on things again. You'll find new stuff this week on the Q & A page, the The Road Not Taken discussion, Life's In-Betweens discussion, and the Affairs discussion. Enjoy.

August 1, '98

Lots of questions this week, but nothing to post on the guest registry (let me hear from you, especially if you're new here). You will find a new post on the Affair discussion, and I hope to get new Q & As up this weekend (Susanne has promised me some new answers). Have a good weekend, and thanks for visiting the Bed and Breakfast Inn.--Mike

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August 3, 1998

Dear Mike,

After reading several of your columns I feel as if your are a friend that I have known for years, but have not talked with in a while. Thanks for having such a fresh, straight forward outlook on life. I only read about 7 or 8 of your columns tonight, but I have marked your sight and will be back later looking for that focus and direction that we all need but sometime fail to see.

Thanks again,

Gary in Longwood, Florida (Orlando)

My response: August 3, '98

Hi Gary--What kind words! Thanks for stopping by.

Everyone--You'll find new conversation today on The Mountain that Refused to be Moved discussion. Also, don't forget the new FRIENDS OF BEST YEARS site. You can post to this discussion (and read other messages) 24 hours per day.

Have a good week. And do leave a message here if it's your first time to visit Best Years.--Mike

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August 10, 1998

Hi Mike! This is my first time on your web page. I am a young and inexperienced pastor of a church in eastern Iowa (Clinton, Iowa). I ran across your page while looking for information on busyness for an upcoming sermon. I really appreciate your thoughts and insight on this topic. I haven't had 'time' to really dig into your page yet, but I wondered what role God plays, in your mind, in claiming the middle years of life as the best. Big question I know, but I was just curious about the persepective that you write from. Thanks for the help with my sermon and thanks in advance for your response.

A new fan...Pastor Greg


Thank you for your response, it didn't occur to me that you might take a vacation...... I will consider your advice to seek counseling, I am not ready quite yet, but I know if things don't get better I have to "face the music" thanks for listening, it felt good.


My response: August 10, '98

Hi Greg. Glad to be of help. Your question is a good one and deserves a longer answer than I have room for here. So check in from time to time on the Q & A page and I'll be sharing what role I think God plays in midlife renewal.

Disappointed--Thanks for the note. Yes, I do take vacations from time to time, and there are other things (among them the volume of letters we receive here) that make a response slower than what I want. Thanks for your patience.

Everyone--Not many messages here this weekend, but I will try to put some more responses on the Q & A page as soon as possible. Meanwhile, the new FRIENDS OF BEST YEARS site receives about 20 messages per day. So if you want to hear more frequently from other midlifers like yourself, you might give it a try (remember the 1st month is free and there's no obligation after that). Have a good week; I'll post again on Friday.--Mike

August 14, 1998

I found your web today. Inspite to inability of language problem, i will try to sent the opinion about 40's. Hope, Happiness, Enjoying are good words, but i can find them around i. how about you.

Lee Insoo

My response: August 14, '98

Hi Lee--Yes I find those things around me at midlife--didn't always--but do now. Thanks for writing. Your English is OK.

Everyone--You will also find new conversation this weekend on the DownAging discussion page. And thanks to all of you who have visited FRIENDS OF BEST YEARS . I've enjoyed the dialogue. Have a great weekend. I'll post again on Monday.


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August 17, 1998

Hey Mike,

I've been actively involved with the FRIENDS OF BEST YEARS WebBoard for several months, and I just wanted you to know how uplifting and fulfilling the conversation is. I've developed new relationships with people from all over the country, and other parts of the world, and that's exciting. You know what a thrill it is to have a bunch of new messages, personal correspondence, every day to read and answer. It's been a fantastic experience. I'm writing to strongly suggest that your readers give it a try. The price sure is right.

I also just ordered your new booklets, and I can't wait to receive them.

Thanks again, Mike, and keep up the great work.

Thomas Lott

My response: August 17, '98

And thanks for the commercial Thomas. I couldn't have written it better ;)

Hey everyone--I've also put up some new stuff on the Q & A page. So enjoy. And thanks for visiting.


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August 22, 1998

I feel as if I have found a life-raft in your site and it is gratefully appreciated. What a lovely consoling spot I have been led to. Keep it up.

Sincerely, Kristi

My response: August 22, '98

Hi Kristi. Glad to have you here.

Everyone--You'll find new stuff this weekend on the Midlife Crisis Forum, the Affairs Discussion, and the Q & A page.


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August 28, 1998

Hi all. I've received many questions since my last entry here, but nothing directed to the guest registry. So drop me a line and just say "hi." I get lonely ;-)


August 31, '98

Hey everyone. You'll find new stuff this week on the Affairs discussion and the Letting Go discussion, and I hope to have some new Q & As later in the week. Take care.


September 4, '98

Hi. You'll find new things this weekend on the Affairs discussion and the Q & A page. Enjoy.


September 7, '98

Hey, thanks for visiting and we're still getting lots of questions. Will try to put some more Q & A's up toward the end of the week. Hope you enjoyed the holiday. I did. Visited the new grandbaby in Dallas. Keep in touch.


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September 11, '98

Hi. You'll find new conversation this weekend on the Midlife Crisis Forum, and I hope to get new Q & A's up by tomorrow (Saturday). Have a good weekend.


September 14, '98

Greetings. I finally got some new answers up on the Q & A page. Sorry to be so long with these. You'll find lots of chages this week on my home page and other major places. I hope the new layout is more clear. If not, or if you have a suggestion, please email me. Also, for you oldtimers, I have written a number of new columns, but they have to run in the local newspaper before I can put them here. So be patient; they'll be up soon. (by the way, the new home page tells how to get my column in your local newspaper).

Have a good week--Mike

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September 25, '98


I loved your column in today's Amarillo Daily News! Having been in band myself (Littlefield) from 1953 to 1961, I recognized many of the traits you mentioned right away.

Had it not been for band, especially in grades 5 through 8, my life would have been very lonely and boring-- since I never got into sports.

I will fight forever to keep band and choir a part of The public school experience.

Good wishes,

Gene in Amarillo


Hi !

Just signing in as you requested. My name is Ann Marie Zinowich. I just found this site...... off to do some reading :o)

My response: September 25, '98

Hi Gene--Thanks for the encouraging words (for those of you reading this only on the web, the column called "Old Tuba Player" will appear on this site in 6 to 8 weeks).

Hey Ann Marie. Thanks for signing in, and I hope you'll visit often.

Everyone--You'll also find new conversation today on the Back to School discussion. Have a good weekend.--Mike

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September 28, '98

Nice web site. Responding from area near Houston, Texas. Transplanted from West Texas to South Texas by marriage. Exploring this site, I am sure, will embellish my feminine mental wonderings. Amarillo 1953


My response: Sept. 28, '98

Nice to hear from you CM. I'm sure we'll profit from those "mental wonderings" too.

Everyone, You'll find new things this week on the Midlife Crisis Forum and the Q & A page.

Have a good one, and thanks for dropping by.


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