My mother was a drug and alcohol rehab councelor, and she always told me research studies she had read that said men were something like twice as likely to leave an alcoholic wife than a wife would leave an alcoholic husband. I know I'm going to get totally flamed for this, but it's been my opinion for some time that perhaps women just love more deeply than men. Women leave in order to preserve their mental or physical health. Men leave because they get bored or tired. Sex and the City I think does have a flavor of reality to it, even though it's just a tv show, in that love and relationships are really the center of a woman's life, whereas for most men, it seems to be just something they do if they have time, after all the important stuff is done. I experienced it in my own relationship and have seen it in many others, that it seems like the woman is loving for the both of them. But to answer your question a bit more fully, Jeff, if I'm understanding you correctly, you're asking why more women leave after 40 than men? Well, I think these days, women don't have to stay in bad marriages the way they did 30 years ago. We have more financial independence, more choices, more opportunities, and we are better able to take care of ourselves. We don't NEED men the way we used to, so we no longer put up with verbal abuse. Men are taken by surprise I think because there's probably no communication in the relationship, or they didn't listen when their wife tried to talk to them about problems in the marriage. I think some men don't take their wives seriously, chalk it up to her overreacting, being emotional, and it doesn't dawn on them that she would actually leave over it. My father couldn't understand why my mom was so unhappy because she had a roof over her head and food on the table, what more did she want? He just didn't get it. I think he'd be totally shocked if she ever did just up and leave one day.