My 45 year old husband has grown out his hair and refuses to get it cut no matter how hard I protest. He is a businessman and looks totally silly in a suit with that mop. Worse yet, on weekends he wears it in a ponytail. Why would a guy do this?
Chuck went to college with a guy who used to scream “HEY LONGHAIR” every time he saw a well coiffed young man. At the time Chuck thought it was hilarious because he’d do it no matter when or where he was at the top of his lungs. In retrospect, it was probably a homophobic act, especially when you consider that the guy who was doing it was a hard-core redneck. Ahh the follies of youth! Anyway, now whenever Chuck sees a bloke with lengthy tresses, HEY LONGHAIR immediately rings in his head.
It is a simple fact that no man looks good with long hair – well except Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder (that’s an extremely subjective opinion since Chuck’s had a man crush on him since the early 90’s). Seriously, sit down with a note pad and pen and jot down every longhaired dude that gets your motor running?
Well, that didn’t go so well, Chuck just posed the question to Mrs Long who instantaneously responded – “Johnny Depp has always had a bit of a mane”. Let’s make Eddie and Johnny the exceptions to the rule and continue. It’s always alarming when an older guy grows his hair out because you typically attribute long straggly hair to homeless people or paedophiles. If your husband has started to accrue plastic bags and shopping carts then you should have serious concerns.
Now if your husband is oblivious to how bad he looks in a suit with long hair and pays no attention to your complaints you can either try to rally his co-workers to your cause and hope that they can drum some sense into him or get your kids to start barking at him. You’re in trouble if he is a senior guy at work because no one will have the nuts to confront him for fear of ex-communication and career damnation. Plus some of the younger males at his workplace may actually like this anti-establishment look that he is going for. The kids may be the best option since it would be a stinger to his pride if his kids refuse to hang out with him because he looks like a wanna-be porn star, especially when his hair is in ponytail mode.
We’re about 500 words into this post so it’s probably time for Chuck to get serious. Anytime a guy clicks into his 40’s and pulls a stunt like growing his hair out you have to consider mid-life crisis. On the mid-life crisis scale, long hair probably ranks as a 1. Things can be a whole lot worse, lets take a look at some other common signs of mid life crisis:
Drinking or gambling. Looking for additional thrills or trying to mix things up, men may turn to gambling as a means to add excitement. The drinking may be to dull depression or as an opportunity to get out and about with some younger company. If your husband is a senior dude at work, imagine the glee the junior staff will have at the realisation that the boss is out buying drinks and getting into mischief. Plus it presents an opportunity for him to nail chicks from the office.
Ploughing through the family’s life savings. He probably thinks he’s worked hard all his life to amass this financial nest egg and is now wondering if it was all worth it. He may even believe he deserves a Porshe or a boat despite the fact that you have three young kids who wont fit or that he has never been on a sea-going vessel before.
Sudden career change. Here he is, working his guts out doing something that pays decent coin. All of a sudden he decides he isn’t getting any satisfaction from his 200k per year job and goes out and buys a lawn mowing round.. Kid’s private education be damned. Worse yet, he didn’t mention this career change to you until he did it.
Affair. This is the apex of mid life crisis. Your husband has spent many years as a faithful family man. He hits a point where he feels stagnant and old and all of the sudden he’s hanging out with 22 year old uni students thinking that he is the second coming of Hugh Hefner.
Consider yourself blessed Beth that he hasn’t gone completely off the deep end….yet. The stupid long hair could be the first sign of things to come so you probably want to get pro active and try to figure out what the fuck is going on in his head. This new look may be depression manifesting itself so you’ll want to address it before it gets worse and spirals out of control.
This may also be an opportunity for you to re-evaluate your lifestyle as well. Perhaps you guys are stuck in a rut and need a change. Chuck’s not suggesting that you go out and pork a bar tender but maybe you could load the family into a camper van and take a time out to get to know each other. In that instance you could buy your husband a cheesecloth shirt, some linen pants and a combi van and find some remote beachside town where you guys can embrace your inner hippy. Your kids experience a different lifestyle out of the city, your husband can smoke bongs and get his hair braided and you can maintain your family. It’s only a year living as an itinerant – who knows, perhaps 12 months of hobo living will make him realise just how good he had it!