Some argue that it is a myth. In order for something to be a distinct event, like a Midlife Crisis, it should have characteristics that differentiate it from other types of events. Many mental health researchers question the validity of a Midlife crisis as a unique and distinct experience, different that other stressful phases in life.
Instead, many mental health experts say that a midlife crisis is a pop-psychology term that has confused more people that it has helped.
In order for something to be a Midlife Crisis, it should be experienced solely in mid-life. However, many report experiencing the symptoms of a midlife crisis at nearly every age. This calls into question the salience of one’s mid-life on the cause (or contributing factor) of their crisis.
Also, some question the accuracy of giving this event, if it does exist, the title of a “crisis”. One researcher instead suggests that people face “turning points” during this phase (and other phases) of life. Viewing it as a turning point in life, instead of a crisis, may be both more accurate and helpful.
Lastly, some research indicates that it is common across the lifespan that people’s overall happiness and satisfaction is lowest in middle-ages; that satisfaction levels follow a “U Shape” across life. Thus, a “Midlife Crisis” may not be a distinct, acute event but a natural and predictable outcome of a life pattern.
Ultimately, it is hard to prove it does or does not exist as a distinct experience.