While menopause affects every woman differently, there is no denying that this inevitable phase of life causes drastic physical and emotional changes to those going through it. But it doesn’t only affect the woman experiencing the changes, it can also affect a spouse who may feel helpless and confused. Below, we discuss three common things that most women wish their husbands knew as they witness them going through this new life milestone.
1. It’s Ok to Talk About It
Many women are not entirely sure what to expect of perimenopause and menopause — let alone their spouses — but communicating with each other can be greatly beneficial for both individuals. Men may have many questions during this huge life change, but feel uncomfortable to discuss them. It’s important to break the stigma and encourage honest conversations.
As the woman experiencing menopause, share what symptoms you are facing and ways your spouse may be supportive. As the spouse, ask any questions to help you better understand menopause and what to expect. To recognize the common symptoms and have a better understanding of what your wife may be experiencing, you should first learn what exactly are perimenopause and menopause.
Perimenopause involves the body decreasing hormone production usually 8-10 years before the full onset of menopause. Once menopause begins, the menstrual cycle has fully stopped, ovaries stopped producing a majority of estrogen, and a wide range of symptoms may become present. It’s a natural part of life and, with some support, you will both get through these changes.
2. There are Ways to be Supportive
For a spouse, watching the woman they love endure the challenges of menopause can be difficult and make them feel helpless, but there are ways to be supportive. Make the transition easier by asking how you can help. Menopause isn’t something that can be “fixed,” but the symptoms may be eased.
While it may be hard at the moment to recognize, mood swings are not always aimed at you or something you did, but rather a symptom of menopause. Help her feel relaxed and enjoy her favorite activities with her, or give her some time and space if that is what she prefers. Another common change that may occur during menopause is weight gain which can diminish a person’s self confidence. One way to be supportive is by joining them in the gym, helping them make healthy meals, and reassuring them that they are perfect just the way they are. Empathy and small actions to show you care go a long way. We’re not always looking for unsolicited advice or solutions, just support and kind words to know we’re not alone in this journey.
3. I Still Love You
Perimenopause and menopause bring many physical and emotional changes to the body. Hot flashes, insomnia, mood swings/irritability, and vaginal dryness can all drastically impact a woman’s quality of life, her marriage, and her sex life. In addition to the uncomfortable symptoms turning many women off from sex during menopause, the reduced production of hormones has also been known to dramatically lower libido.
Be open and honest about what each other expects in their sex life and what they’re comfortable doing. If sex is painful, Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy may be your solution or find other ways to keep the intimacy alive in your marriage. Ideas include planning romantic date nights, writing each other love letters, or taking walks to talk and catch up. Just because aging and menopause have changed what your sex life may look like, it does not mean your spouse no longer loves you or finds you attractive and it won’t last forever. Be honest and patient with each other to find what works for both of you.
Find Your Balance
Regardless of how severe your menopausal symptoms are, Renewed Vitality is prepared to get your body back on track with a personalized solution that works for you. Schedule your consultation today and get the balance back in your life!