By Kathryn Whittaker
Women tend to experience menopause between the ages of 45 and 55. The female body, no longer needing to maintain the reproductive system shuts it down. For some fortunate women the process is gradual – but for most it is akin to slamming a book shut. The body diminishes the production of progesterone and estrogen.
Some of you reading this may be wondering how this has anything to do with relationships. The reality of the situation is that women experiencing menopause can be subjected to a wide variety of troubling symptoms including: insomnia, loss of libido, changes in appetite, weight gain, depression, anger, mood swings, and hot flashes.
In terms of relationships it is not difficult to understand that some, if not all of these symptoms, can be detrimental to a healthy relationship. One minute you may be feeling fine and the next you might experience a bout of anger. While it is impossible to fashion a menopause-proof vest, your significant other will most likely have to deal with your fluctuating emotional state. True, he or she should be understanding, but dealing with mood swings can be difficult. Many women report not feeling like themselves. This can be difficult for your partner to deal with so it is important for there to be consideration on both sides.
In addition, many women go through a period of feeling undesirable, experiencing vaginal dryness, and a lack of sexual libido. This is normal but can also be difficult to deal with. The quality of a couple’s sexual relationship can be threatened.
There are a few ways to cope with the situation. An option is to see a mental health professional such as a counselor. You can either go alone or with your significant other. There are even some group therapy sessions that might be particularly helpful. The most important thing is that you get the help you need.
If you are having difficulty communicating out loud what you are going through with your partner you might want to try writing down what you are feeling. Since there are emotional side effects during menopause, simply writing down what you are feeling can be of tremendous benefit to both you and your partner.
Remember, getting through this tough time should not fall squarely on your shoulders. If you clearly explain what you are going through to your partner you should expect a demonstration of understanding.
If you are the significant other of a woman going through menopause and reading this know that you can help the situation by suggesting new ideas to take your relationship forward – sexually and otherwise. Maintaining a relationship through menopause can be a challenge. It takes dedication, love, support, trust, and honesty to allow the relationship to survive.
Menopause is a condition that all women must experience. The real decision you have to make is whether you are going to let the symptoms of menopause significantly change your life or are you going to work around them. Trust your partner to support you, and together, there is nothing the both of you can not do.
About the Author: Kathryn Whittaker has an interest in Menopause. For further information on Menopause please visit