Tip #2 She May Not Tell You Things
Menopause is still such a taboo subject that it can be hard to talk about, even between intimate, long-term partners. As this husband of 28 years said, Dont take it personally if she doesnt want to share the details with you. What happened to her that day might be really embarrassing, like maybe she had a hot flash while training some 22-year-old intern. Be open to hearing it, but also be open to not hearing it. And it can depend on the day, too one day its humiliating, the next day its hilarious. Just try to go with it.
How You May Have Interpreted The Signs And Symptoms Of The Menopause
- I often feel rejected, particularly in bed.
- I wonder if shes having an affair.
- I think shes suffering from depression.
- I suspect/know that shes troubled by some health issues.
- Her work is causing her stress causing her to be tetchy, and Im bearing the brunt of it.
- I think she is taking it badly that the children have left home empty nest syndrome and all that.
- Im not sure that she loves me anymore.
- I think that shes cottoned on to my misdemeanours
Of course, these may or may not be accurate but the menopause is likely to have played a role.
Hopefully, youll have read Part 1 and youre now better able to place your experience and your problems in the context of your wifes menopausal symptoms.
Youll understand now that the physical and emotional symptoms of the menopause are all too real. And, they can potentially exacerbate pre-existing relationship issues!
The good news is you can do much to bring about some peace and calm and save your marriage.
Lets get cracking with ways to help your wife through this period of change since you searched for information about the menopause for husbands or partners.
The Effects On Relationships
While menopause is natural and normal, husbands and wives are often caught off guard by changes in their marriage relationship. Many husbands become confused by the behavior of their wife during menopause. The first thing men often notice is a decrease in sexual desire by their spouse.
As both partners age, a decrease in the frequency of sexual intimacy is normal, but during menopause some women have a significant loss of desire or begin to experience so much discomfort with intercourse that they choose to avoid contact. The husband may not understand whats going on and feel rejected or even suspicious that his wife is interested in someone else.
If a couple is already experiencing marital problems, then moodiness, irritability, confusion and sudden outbursts of anger may add another level of difficulty. Counseling may be necessary for both spouses during this crucial time of hormonal change.
So What Can You Do To Help Your Partner During Menopause
- Be informedThere are so many books with good information on the topic of men and menopause. Dr. Diana Bitners book, I Want to Age Like That, has an entire chapter dedicated to helping men understand menopause, and it includes a long list of suggestions to help you help her. You may also want to share Dr. Bitners Seven Essential Elements of Daily Success article with her.
- Do your researchWebsites like menopause.org and isswsh.org have so much FREE information that can help both men and women navigate the struggles of menopause symptoms . If you have some information before you talk with your partner, she will see that you are really trying to understand what she is going through.
- Be sensitiveAlong with sensitivity comes compassion and understanding. Try not to place blame on anyone and stay nonreactive when having a conversation.
- Use I languageStart every sentence with I: Saying I feel hurt when I try to be intimate with you and you turn away is much better than saying, You never want to have sex anymore. It takes the blame away from your partner and makes for a much more productive conversation.
Annette Was On The Pill And Had Started The Menopause When She Fell Pregnant With Her Son
A range of contraceptive methods can be used, including barrier methods such as condoms and caps, the mini-pill , and sterilisation. Hormone coils, such as the Mirena coil, which are inserted into the uterus, can help with heavy bleeding as well as act as a contraceptive. The rhythm method of natural family planning is unreliable during the menopause because the periods are unpredictable.
What about the contraceptive pill? Is that any use to menopausal women?There is quite a lot of controversy about the contraceptive pill. The problem is once youre over 40 the risks of heart attacks and strokes and clots in the legs for the combined contraceptive pill do go up. So most GPs are very unhappy about women taking the combined oral contraceptive pill right up to the age of 50. Although experts in the pill like say its safe, I think women have to weigh up the pros and the cons to them for it. There is the mini-pill, which is a progesterone only pill, that you can take up to the menopause and is equally safe in this age group, the over 40 age group. And then as we said, there are hormone coils. There are non-hormone coils. There are contraceptive injections and there are implants as well as good old condoms and caps, if you want a barrier method.
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Its Not Better Than A Period
Theoretically, not having a period ought to be better than having one because there is no more bleeding every month, and the accompanying cramps, bloating, nausea and PMS to deal with. Except it isnt. The toll living through menopause takes on ones body can make periods seem like a walk in the park.
You Need To Talk About Sex
Diane says: “Personal intimacy can completely go out the window. That leaves both partners feeling very isolated.
“Quite often the woman is avoiding any sort of sexual intimacy, because a) if shes got no libido and is worrying about that then she is going to avoid any kind of physical contact, even just having a hug or cuddle on the sofa and b) if shes physically suffering for example with a urinary tract infection or vaginal soreness or atrophy.
“The emotional and physical gap widens and then that gap gets harder to bridge. Once this communication breaks down, it gets harder and harder to start the conversation.
“Lots of the men that I speak to talk about the emotional isolation and how sad they feel that its broken down.”
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Go Through It Together
Menopause isnt easy for women, but its also not easy for men. As a guy and a physician who specializes in caring for women in this stage of life, this is my best advice: Understand whats happening with your partner and know why its happening. This can help you navigate your way through the challenges of menopausetogether. Now that you know more about menopause than you ever thought you would use that information to work with your partner to bring a healthy relationship back into your bedroom and into your life.
Men Dealing With Women’s Menopause Symptoms
BySusan Megge | Submitted On October 23, 2006
Some of the changes and symptoms women encounter as they approach menopause can be difficult to withstand, and it’s not unusual to wonder if you’ll ever feel “normal” again. Not only are you dealing with physical symptoms of menopause, such as hot flashes, night sweats, irregular periods and weight gain, but there are many emotional changes that take place as a result of declining hormone levels.
You may experience moodiness, depression or feelings of sadness and hopelessness. If this is the case, there’s a strong likelihood that your mate is feeling somewhat confused by your behavior and may be left wondering if you still love him and want to spend the rest of your life with him.
If your husband or partner is anything like mine, it’s not likely that he’ll research information that’s available to him in order to figure out what’s happening within your body and how it may be affecting your emotions. If men don’t have the answers, how will they respond to the “foreign” you?
Unfortunately, men respond to women’s hormonal imbalances using many different approaches that aren’t always the most effective. Some men simply ignore the problem and hope it will go away, while others may be overbearing and treat their partner as if she’s emotionally fragile and incapable of dealing with life.
9.Make your wife laugh – even if you need to be the butt of your own jokes .
Also Check: Can Woman Produce Milk After Menopause
Hormonal Changes Can Affect Men Physically And Emotionally
Menopause is often associated with hot flashes and mood swings in women. So, do hormonal changes with similar symptoms occur in men as they age? Is male menopause a real medical issue?
The answer is yes. But male menopause is just one easy way to describe it.
Male menopause is a condition that affects older men. It carries a set of symptoms that are linked to declining testosterone levels and aging. It is also referred to as andropause, androgen decline in the aging male, late onset hypogonadism and low testosterone.
Not every man will experience this. But the symptoms are very real, says Luigi Simone, MD, a family medicine physician at Scripps Clinic Encinitas with a special focus on mens health. Theres a reason its called male menopause. Its because it can produce many of the same symptoms as female menopause.
Those symptoms include irritability, weight gain, low sex drive and function, problems sleeping, depression, fatigue and loss of strength. It may even include hot flashes.
While doctors can treat these symptoms, male menopause is difficult to identify. Thats because the symptoms in many cases may have nothing to do with testosterone deficiency, but with other conditions.
Why do men experience low testosterone?
A decline in testosterone and symptoms that may arise are gradual compared to what women experience during menopause.
Male menopause symptoms
What does a blood test do?
- Family Medicine
A Natural Time Of Life
Sadly, this womans feelings about what was happening in her life theres something wrong with me are shared by too many women. While menopause can come with discomforts and inconveniences, it is not a disease or abnormality. Its a natural time in a womans life, and most of the things a woman experiences at this time are typical.
Menopause is the point in life when a womans ovaries begin to significantly decrease production of the hormones estrogen, progesterone and testosterone. Estrogen and progesterone are the two principle female hormones, while testosterone, although commonly thought of as a male hormone, is produced in small amounts in the ovaries and adrenal glands. In women, testosterone plays an important role in sexual desire and energy enhancement.
Menopause is defined as 12 months of going without a menstrual period. The most common symptoms are hot flashes, sweating, increased irritability and mood changes, sleep disturbances, difficulty concentrating and thinning of hair on the head. Vaginal dryness resulting in painful intercourse often occurs later.
Menopause doesnt occur at a specific age, although the average age it begins is just over 51 years. If a womans ovaries are surgically removed, she enters what is known as surgical menopause.
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Be In Tune With What Shes Going Through
The whole point of understanding the menopause is to able to support your wife through this trying transition. So pay attention to the physical and emotional changes shes going through and be there for her. Her symptoms can vary from irritability and mood swings to anxiety and depression. While the former can be handled with the right mix of compassion, empathy and a little sense of humour, the latter may require clinical intervention.
So being in tune with your spouses state of body and mind is crucial. Nudge her a bit in the right direction if you feel that things are getting out of control. Try to maintain a happy environment at home and make her more comfortable by taking the things that are irritating her off her hand.
Renegotiating The Daily And Sexual Relationship
The couple may have to re-negotiate who does what as energy levels and motivation alter – especially if depression is an issue. The couple may also have to discuss and experiment with different sexual positions that would make intercourse more comfortable.
I was on HRT and because of all the scares I came off it, my life became a total misery with mood swings, night sweats and depression. I tried all sorts of natural remedies, checked my diet and continued to exercise, but just felt really down. Recently I went back to my GP and he put me back on HRT. Ive got my life back.
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Coping With Mum/friend And How She Feels
It’s useful if friends and family can be supportive at this time, and to do this they need to be informed, sympathetic and supportive.
I had a hysterectomy 15 yrs ago and was put on HRT for a short time then the doctor stopped it. After some time I was crawling up the walls, my family hated my mood swings and I begged my GP to put me back on HRT. He eventually did and now I have enough energy to play with my grandchildren and my husband likes me again.
Im 49 yrs old and started with hot flushes. When they come, I get 4-5 a day and if Im at work I have to get my little fan out which annoys my colleagues I just have to get cool …
Know When It Is Something More Serious
Your partner may be depressed if she:
- Is sad for weeks
- Seems guilt-ridden, anxious, or hopeless
- Seems easily irritated by others and unable to tolerate people
- Lacks energy and interest
- Has unexplained physical changes, like weight loss or gain
Depression can occur on its own or be a symptom of menopause. Whatever the trigger, it is important that you get help if you suspect your wife is suffering from the illness. Consult your medical provider for advice.
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Fear And Anger Life Stages
These are just two of the emotions felt by both partners at this time in a relationship. There may be other contributory factors adding to these emotions, such as empty nest, retirement, ill-health and also many women may be looking after elderly parents as well as dealing with their own fears.
I didnt know what was happening to me.I wanted to get out of my skin.
Helping Husbands With Women In Menopause
We talked to several men whove been through midlife with their partners, making them qualified to offer ideas on menopause help for men. This is for all the you out there who are now or one day may be sharing a life with a woman in menopause. Spoiler alert: Youre going to need patience, love, and some courage. Youve got this!
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Increased Risk Of Some Health Conditions
After menopause, the risk of certain health issues appears to increase. Menopause does not cause these conditions, but the hormonal changes involved may play some role.
Osteoporosis: This is a long-term condition in which bone strength and density decrease. A doctor may recommend taking vitamin D supplements and eating more calcium-rich foods to maintain bone strength.
Cardiovascular disease: The American Heart Association note that, while a decline in estrogen due to menopause may increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, taking hormone therapy will not reduce this risk.
Breast cancer: Some types of breast cancer are more likely to develop after menopause. Menopause breast cancer, but hormonal changes involved appear to increase the risk.
Skin changes can also occur around the time of menopause. Find out more.
Can Male Menopause Be Treated
If testosterone levels are low, testosterone replacement therapy may help relieve symptoms such as:
- Loss of interest in sex
Just as with hormone replacement therapy in women, testosterone replacement therapy has potential risks and side effects. Replacing testosterone may worsen prostate cancer and increase the risk of heart disease, for example.
If you are considering androgen replacement therapy, talk to a doctor to learn more. Your doctor may also recommend certain lifestyle or other changes to help with some symptoms of male menopause. These include:
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Over 60 Percent Of Divorces Are Initiated By Women In Their 40s 50s Or 60s The Menopause Years According To A Recent Survey Conducted By Aarp Magazine Why Are Women Running Away From Marriage
This article has been archived. We will no longer be updating it. For our most up-to-date information, please visit our menopause hub here.
Over 60 percent of divorces are initiated by women in their 40s, 50s or 60s the menopause years according to a recent survey conducted by AARP Magazine. Why are women running away from marriage?
I wasn’t even married when I slammed into menopause months before my wedding day at the age of 47. Despite being completely in love, I almost ran away and my fiance almost married bridezella!
Experts say the number one reason for divorce is lack of communication. My response from the ladies corner, When everything you know to be normal is being kidnapped by changing hormones, communication may be last on the list. Throw in lifestyle changes, health and aging issues, and you are left in a small evaporating puddle of low self-esteem feeling hopeless.”
Many men blame lack of sex as the leading reason for midlife divorce. But is it? AARP poled 1,682 adults ages 45 and older on the importance of sex. Two-thirds of men and about half of women agreed that a satisfying sex life was important to their quality of life. That is only an 18 percent difference. So is it lack of sex, or a breakdown in communication chasing the women away?
Navigating a course in uncharted territory can test any relationship emotionally and sexually. It can also bring a couple closer it did for me.
Gentlemen your turn.