What Do Women Really Want?

There is always something happening when I’m not looking. Usually I’m not surprised. Mostly the strange goings on just reflect an aspect of human nature with which I’m already familiar. But this one took me by surprise, assuming it’s true:

From the Dallas Morning News appears this essay by Christine Wicker,

A lot of midlife women in my acquaintance are leaving what appear to be perfectly good and loving husbands. Or thinking about it. Or cheating on them. Or wanting to. Or staying married and faithful but buying their own houses, which they either live in or keep as a bolt hole.

This astonishes me. I grew up believing it was men who had midlife crises that threatened marriage.

I decided one recent morning to list women I knew who fit the profile. In 15 minutes, I came up with 30 names. Some families on my list have more than one walk-away wife.

All this may be an anomaly signifying nothing. But if is a real phenomenon and large enough to constitute a trend, to what will it lead? What will be the larger consequences? Will these women find the good life? Or will they just find life to be not much better, and maybe even a bit worse?

Stuart Schniederman weighs in:

What is it all about? Are these women getting their second wind? Are they thinking that they can now find the love they have been missing in their marriages? If they are in their mid-forties, they may think that it is their last chance at true romance.

Or perhaps they are anticipating the possibility of being dumped for younger women and are trying to pre-empt the pain of rejection. After their husbands get over the shock of a broken home, many of them, as Dr. Helen points out, are going to do just fine out there.

Just as college girl hooking up, supported by feminists as a step toward liberation, is a boon for teenage boys, so perhaps is this new trend among their mothers a boon for middle aged men.

If middle-aged hooking up becomes as common as college girl hooking up, I have no doubt that the chief beneficiaries will be middle aged men.

Will women ever learn?

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