Despite being a well-known period in a woman’s life, menopause often takes her and her spouse by surprise. The symptoms can wreak havoc with her physical and mental health, and with the marriage as well. By knowing the symptoms, how to treat them, and taking a few simple steps to deal with it, you can weather the storm of menopause.
The symptoms of menopause are caused by hormonal changes in a woman’s body that occur around middle age. It affects you both physically and emotionally.
Physical symptoms include:
- hot flashes
- itchy skin
- irregular periods
- night sweats
- breast tenderness
- vaginal dryness
Emotional symptoms include:
The brain also changes, with the “mommy brain” unplugging and the communication and emotion circuits seeming to shut down. This all leads to a drop in both communication and sexual interest.
Most menopause symptoms can be managed with over-the-counter menopause relief supplements like Staying Cool (Amazon) or a regime of essential oils. Stronger relief can be prescribed by a doctor if needed.
If a woman is taking medications such as antidepressants, contraceptives, mood stabilizers, sedatives, antihistamines, or medications for blood pressure, these can contribute to a decreased sex drive. Midlife stresses such as career changes, a suddenly empty nest, caring for elderly parents or the loss of a loved one, can also contribute to a declining libido and a lack of communication.
On top of that, men experience their own midlife changes. These changes are more gradual, less noticeable, and not often talked about. However, declining testosterone can affect his libido, mood, physical condition, and sexual performance. He may also be dealing with midlife stresses. However, because his changes are more gradual and less noticeable, neither of them may realize that part of their problem may be hormonal. Men can also benefit from herbal “male menopause” supplements like TestoTrax (Amazon).
What it all means for your marriage
Lowered libidos can make both spouses feel unattractive, unwanted and unloved. Throw in inhibited communication, and you end up with two people who feel alone and unwanted and can’t talk to each other about it. If this problem continues, both parties may start to consider leaving the marriage.
Communication issues can lead to many things being left unsaid, but it can also contribute to arguments. The sometimes wildly changing emotions of menopause can cause tears or anger seemingly out of the blue.
If you’re willing to take extra measures to ensure open communication with your spouse, you can limit those problems. Working with your doctor and using supplements to treat your symptoms can also help ease the transition from one stage of life to the next.
Which Housing Style Should You Consider After Getting Married?
The wedding is over, the honeymoon was fantastic, and now it’s really time to start your lives as a married couple and create your first home together. With so many options available for your little family, which one is the best place to start your new married life?
There are several perks of living in a condo to consider. Condos can be apartments in high rises, townhomes, or even single-family homes. With a condo, you’re able to own your home, but there is a condo’s homeowners’ association, commonly known as an HOA, to which you’ll pay a monthly fee. You won’t have to worry about mowing your lawn, maintaining outside structures, or other issues and costs that non-condo homeowners encounter. If you don’t have much of a green thumb or DIY capabilities and would rather own than rent, a condo might be the answer for you.
If you weren’t living together before you got married or you’re not yet ready for homeownership, leasing an apartment might be the best way to go for your first home. The shorter time commitment will allow you to get used to cohabitating. It can also give you a better idea of what you want out of your home together. Combining your finances means that you can go into something more substantial and upscale. Still, if your ultimate goal is owning your own place one day, you’ll want to decide what amenities are necessities and what you can do without. That way, you won’t pay for things that you’re not going to use on a regular basis.
If you’re ready to buy your first home together, go for it! However, if you want to have your own house but aren’t quite in the right position to buy yet, consider entering into a rent-to-own lease agreement. Signing such a lease gives you the option of purchasing the home at the end of a specific period. It also gives you a chance to develop homeowning skills, like making repairs and doing landscaping, so that you can see if that’s something you can manage. If you can’t buy at the end of the term, it works just like a regular rental without further obligation. This is also a good choice if your credit isn’t as good as you’d like it to be.
No matter where you choose to live, your first place together as a married couple is bound to be unforgettable. Consider all your options, make your choices, and welcome home!
Here’s another article you might like: When Is the Time Right to Buy a Home?
How to Drink Safely and Responsibly
Developing a responsible relationship with alcohol is important, and many adults realize that their own alcohol use is beyond their control or follows an unhealthy pattern. It may be hard to know where you should call the line and how to start setting boundaries for yourself.
In the United States, many adults experience social pressure to drink because their friends do. As a result, even those wanting to cut back or abstain may find themselves drinking anyway for fear of losing friends or experiencing social isolation.
You can address your drinking in a productive way and start drinking safely with these tips. Remember that drinking is a personal choice, and you should always be prioritizing your physical and mental well-being. Do not let social pressure or fear stop you from drinking responsibly and following your own limits.
Drink with Friends
This may sound counterintuitive to the previous point, but you shouldn’t drink alone or avoid people because you’re worried about your alcohol consumption. Instead, you should only drink during social events or with individuals who respect your desire to only consume a safe amount of alcohol.
If you have friends that only want to spend time with you when you are heavily drinking, or they pressure you to drink more than you want to, it’s best to cut ties and start seeking out more positive, respectful relationships. Good friends don’t have to share your boundaries to respect them.
Always Plan a Ride Home
When you do go out to drink, make sure you arrange for someone to drive you home. Don’t use this as a fail-safe, though. You should still be setting a healthy alcohol limit and avoid binge drinking.
Rideshare apps can be dangerous for people who have drunk too much, so you should still make sure that you are alert and aware of your surroundings at all times even when you’re catching a ride home. You may even offer to be the designated driver for your group of friends, so you can go out without drinking.
Eat a Meal and Drink Water
Alcohol dehydrates you, and it will make you drunk more quickly if you drink on an empty stomach. Eat a full meal before you drink, and have a glass of water between drinks. Not only does this make you less likely to get a hangover, but you will also consume less alcohol if you’re taking a break between drinks to consume water.
Drinking water also reduces the intensity of hangover symptoms. Some hangover cures contain all-natural ingredients, like coconut water and ginger-lemon tonics. Staying hydrated is the best way to avoid hangovers or minimize their effects.
Get Help if You Need It
If you want to quit drinking or reduce your alcohol intake but find it difficult, you may want to consider alcohol addiction treatment. Medically known as alcohol use disorder (AUD), a drinking problem can range from mild to severe. In many cases, people need to learn more about alcohol and understand why they rely on it before they can make healthier decisions.
Perhaps you’re afraid to stop drinking because of losing friends or facing social pressures. In this case, talking to a therapist could help you develop healthy boundaries and find ways to meet new people and communicate your desire to drink less in a casual way.
By paying attention to how much you consume, setting limits and choosing your company wisely, you can enjoy alcohol responsibly and feel more confident in your ability to have fun without drinking.
Loved this article? Read this one next: 3 Super Simple Habits to Improve Your Health
New Book by Dr. Sheila: Yes, I Have Herpes
Yes, I Have Herpes is a phenomenal resource from a medical perspective. It dispels myths, shares facts, and provides physical and emotional treatments for patients who don’t always get the education and information from their doctors. But just as important, Dr. Loanzon shares how she got herpes, how it’s affected her relationships and self-esteem, and how it became a part of who she is and her journey toward enlightenment, love, and happier relationships.
You can find Dr. Sheila at http://www.drsheilagyn.com/