GOING DEEPER: MENOPAUSE AND MARRIAGE

“The #1 thing that helps a woman deal with menopause… stress management.” —Rhonda Jolliffe

Menopause is defined as the loss of hormones, marked by a woman not having a menstrual cycle for a period of 1 year.

While that definition seems to be all about the woman, the truth is that menopause impacts wives and their husbands.

It’s not a singular experience and it’s not a one time set of circumstances.

This is a process that many will equate to middle aged and yet it can start as early as 35!

As the female body ages there is a decline in hormones that can be present.

There are hormone receptors on every single cell in your body. When there is a loss of hormones, every single cell in your body is impacted.

When those cells are impacted a woman can experience:

  • Mood swings
  • Headaches
  • Irritability
  • Fatigue
  • Weakened skin integrity
  • Lower libido
  • Vaginal dryness

It’s no surprise that menopause can be one of the most challenging times for a couple.

She’s dealing with all of these physical changes that also have an emotional toll on her.

On the other side he’s dealing with not knowing what to do to help care for his wife.

So what is a couple to do?

First, wives, share what’s going on with your body with husband.

If you are going to doctor’s visits, ask him to come with you.

Let him know how you are feeling. Trying to deal with this yourself can lead you to feeling helpless and isolated.

He loves you, don’t keep him in the dark.

Next, create a lifestyle management plan that will support your adrenal health.

As the ovaries stop producing hormones, the adrenal glands can become overworked. The adrenal glands are the ones that help you deal with stress.

This lifestyle plan will include looking at:

  • Sleep
  • Exercise
  • Nutrition
  • Stress management

Finally, look at your symptoms and reach out to a health care provider for assistance.

For example, if you experience dryness it can make you want to avoid sex because painful sex is no good for anyone.

Wives, your husband would much rather that you use a lubricant and be comfortable during sex than not use it and not want to have sex.

Menopause doesn’t have to be this scary unknown because with the right resources both you and your spouse will make it through this season together.

Rhonda Jolliffe is an expert in women’s health and bio-identical hormone replacement. In addition to her private practice and over 50,000 clinical interactions to date, she is a Clinical Instructor for the Nurse Practitioner Program at the University of North Dakota.

She is passionate about sharing her knowledge with her students and other healthcare professionals around the country. Learn more about Rhonda by listening to Menopause Guide Podcast and join her at Menopause University.

Other Resources:

Strategic Coaching Session with Alisa

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