Men

The woman in your life is probably going through menopause – you know it but she doesn’t acknowledge it and look, I know you have some idea of what’s going on but I also know that you don’t really want to know about.Women’s problems! But there’s no getting away from it and I’ve set out for you here some information to understand a bit more from your own perspective and please look around the rest of the website for further information.

seven dwarves of menopauseYou’ve heard of Disney’s Seven Dwarves but have you ever seen them with these new names? Itchy, Bitchy, Sweaty, Sleepy, Bloated, Forgetful and dear Psycho! These are some of the real problems experienced by women at menopause. It’s no joke! With neither of you having any knowledge of what’s going on you could become a divorce statistic for all the wrong reasons. I’ve seen it happen all around me and I read about it in the news. It almost happened to me! It’s a very real problem.

So now, the woman in your life is menopausal. She’s already been the butt of all your bad jokes, may even have joined in the fun. But you have no idea what she is really going through. Unfortunately, neither does she!

At no other time in a woman’s life is she faced with such a change to her psychological and physiological pattern than at menopause. She’s going through a metamorphosis and it’s like the blind leading the blind. That’s pretty strong stuff. She’s suffering and pretending she can deal with it.

Women don’t want to admit this but menopause is about ageing and just the thought of this can throw up a lot of irrational fears as none of us really wants to acknowledge it. We grin and bear it. But ageing is not what it used to be. It’s all changed and we can change, too. It just takes time and effort on both sides.

Hot Flushes.
Knowing what this symptom means and experiencing it first-hand are two completely different things. If she gets it bad, she will be so distressed you won’t know what’s hit you! She may want to sleep elsewhere in the house ~ not because she can’t stand you snoring any more (!) but because she is sweating so much during the night she has to keep getting up to have a wash or a shower, perhaps even change the bed linen.

Menopause is a very emotional time in a woman’s life, both physically and mentally.

HRT (hormone replacement therapy) either the natural kind or pharmaceutical type can resolve many issues. I don’t need to give you a lesson in biology, you can see what’s going on every time you walk through the front door, perhaps more clearly than your partner can see herself.

If you find she is depressed or aggressive, in other words, totally off her trolley, there may be underlying causes that are contributing to this. She may need counselling. She may not wish to discuss this with you or her doctor. It’s a difficult one to deal with but she will be grateful for your sympathy, support and understanding.

Communication is the key to everything here. As long as you both talk to each other (not shout and argue and try to apportion blame for whatever it is you are arguing about). You will then both begin a journey of learning more about each other and your own needs.

Now it’s your turn. You have your own issues, as well, don’t you? You will not experience the extent of all the physical changes that your partner does, but you may share the emotional ones. The truth is, you are both between a rock and a hard place. Life just changed direction.

Sex. She’s going to go off this and not always understand why. “Why has my libido disappeared and what is a libido anyway!”. The fact that her hormones are walking out the door can be very unsettling – physically and mentally. Be patient, be understanding. The reduction in the amount of hormones at menopause and beyond will cause the natural lubrication in the vagina to dry up and sex becomes very painful. Full penetration causes a sharp needle-like burning pain. She may bleed. Her response maybe just to say ‘no’ to your advances. She thinks ‘this is the end, now what?’ You may both read in magazines that many couples enjoy a happy and healthy sexual relationship, well into old age – are they lying? Pretending? Or, did they manage to get to the bottom of the problem and sort it out?

There are lubricant gels available to purchase over the counter to help this problem but be very careful what you buy – download our Menopause Survival Kit for the right products for this area of sexual health.

Whatever decision you take, consult each other! Once the right product is found you will both notice beneficial changes for the better.

Make love-making a more emotional experience. Talk to each other about it. Find out what she really likes. Please don’t get cross if she says “No” when you fancy sex. It’s not the be all and end all of a happy relationship. By communicating, things should improve.

The woman in your life may show periods of distress ~ “I can’t do this any more”, “I don’t know if I like you any more”, “It’s all your fault!”, “why do I have to do everything?” “I don’t know how you can love me when I’m such a miserable old bag”.

Get her to look through this website. It will settle her fears that she’s NOT alone in this. She isn’t alone – around seven million women in the UK are going through this.

Divorce

Divorce statistics are high at menopause. Women are usually the instigators. A GP on a BBCRadio 4 Woman’s Hour programme phoned in to say: “If I had known more about my wife’s menopause symptoms, we would still be married”. Until you begin to understand the list of stressful symptoms that women go through, you will probably end up as a divorce statistic. If you love her enough, you will want to support her through this time. It’s a long and arduous journey, keep talking!

Helpful Hints

  • Don’t run away! This is a temporary, if long term, condition.
  • It can take many years to complete the process but time goes quickly and you won’t even notice!
  • When you are together ~ instead of arguing, discuss each others likes and dislikes. She’s likely to be aggressive and nasty sometimes ~ change the way you respond to this.
  • Be more diplomatic.
  • Offer to help with the shopping, cooking, cleaning
  • Go out to eat more often ~ she’s probably gone off food (the preparation of it, that is).
  • This is a partnership, share more.couple walking into sunset

The end result of all this care and attention should see you both walking off into the sunset a happier, better informed and
therefore more loving couple or, it could result in divorce because you are just not suited to each other – don’t apportion blame – stuff happens!

I recommend you find a counsellor who understands menopause and how it affects peoples’ lives.

Good Luck!