Everything you need to know to have deep conversations with the people that matter about your menopause journey.
Welcome to “Menopause & Love: Deep Talks,” a series diving headfirst into the heart of relationships. With Valentine’s Day and our February Box just around the corner, what better moment to explore a little talked-about topic? Relationships, deep conversations, and your menopausal journey
In our first blog, “Deep Conversations: The Hidden Impact of Menopause on Relationships,” we dive into communication. Remember, everyone in your life is part of this journey too. Our goal is to shatter the silence and kickstart open, honest conversations.
A 2022 survey by Stowe Family Law revealed that 65% of women report that menopause has negatively impacted their relationships. Menopause isn’t just about physical changes; it’s deeply connected to our mental and emotional health. AARP Magazine conducted a survey that revealed women in their 40s, 50s, and 60s initiated divorce at over 60%.
These statistics are not just numbers; they reflect the effect menopause can have on our relationships. We’re here to guide you in starting these essential conversations with your partner, family, or friends.
Stay with us as we unfold insights, share stories you can relate to, and offer practical advice to help you confidently navigate this journey. Let’s embrace this change together and, as the youngsters say, ‘stand on business,’ at least in our relationships.
Building a Bridge of Communication not Fire
Picture this: You and your partner, once best friends, are now working toward frenemy status. You look at him and sigh; he looks back at you like, “What did I do now?” You are frustrated, he’s confused, and nothing is getting solved. It’s not just you going through menopause – your partner experiences it with you, albeit in a different way. Opening up about these changes, sharing your feelings, and listening to theirs can create a bridge over this gap.
With more than a third of women reporting changes in their intimate lives, it’s clear that menopause reshapes this part of our relationships. You guys are in a new era of relationships, and redefining what that looks like may be the difference between being happy and not so much.
Let me share a bit of my story.
There was a time when I felt like I was on an emotional rollercoaster, and it was affecting not just me but my relationship with my husband. My husband is my best friend, but I would be aggravated with him for just existing during a hot flash. This was beyond skin changes, and this was different.
Not to mention, the drive was not really driving and the mood swings were out of control. Simple conversations turned into misunderstandings, and laughter seemed to fade into silence.
It was during this time I realized I had the power. I could let my relationship suffer or talk to him.
It wasn’t easy because I was trying to explain something I was still trying to understand, but it was a turning point. I even learned about andropause (symptoms like fatigue experienced by middle-aged men) and shared it with him. If I turn the air on or off in the middle of the night, there aren’t any more sideways looks. And as far as the drive, we make it interesting. One of us will play music in the room as a green light.
Starting the Conversation
But how do you start the conversation? Choose a time when both of you are relaxed and not preoccupied. Start with your feelings rather than the symptoms. For instance, “Lately, I’ve been feeling emotional, and you probably have been wondering what is going on” or “I feel like there are things we haven’t discussed that are affecting us. What’s one thing you think we should address to understand each other better?”
Empathy and Patience: A Two-Way Street
He isn’t going to understand a hot flash or mood swing any more than you understand it. It’s about giving each other the space to adapt, understand, and grow together through it. It’s an opportunity to deepen your connection, learn new facts about each other, change together, love, patience, and a willingness to adapt. After all, you will spend 40% of your life postmenopausal and hopefully 100% of it happy.
Your Journey, Your Narrative
Remember, your journey is unique. While statistics paint an ugly picture, your story is yours to write.
These conversations aren’t one-time events; they’re ongoing dialogues. Be patient. The other person (spouse or child) may not be knowledgeable like you or don’t understand it at all, but keep open communication when I began focusing more on my well-being – whether through at-home spa days, meditation, or simply taking time out for a relaxing bath – I noticed a positive shift, not just in my mood, but in my interactions with my husband (insert music here). I was more present, less irritable, and more open to connection.
When we feel good about ourselves, manage stress effectively, and are emotionally balanced, we can communicate better, show more empathy, and share deeper connections.
Never forget, as we focus on love and connection, let’s not forget our fundamental relationship with ourselves.
As we reach the end of our first blog in the series, remember that the journey through change is not one you have to walk alone. Opening up and having these conversations is the first step towards understanding, acceptance, and stronger bonds.
Take that first step today. Download our conversation starters and begin the dialogue that can transform your relationships.
Your voice has the power to heal, connect, and grow. So speak up, reach out, and let’s navigate this journey together.
“Change is not just a phase to endure, but an opportunity to flourish in love, understanding, and connection.” xoxoxo-V