Things Women Want Men To Know About Menopause

Mature black couple in love laughing

Men: do you know enough about the female menopause? Try this quick quiz to see how much you know and how you can help.

1.The most common source that men use to gain information about their partner’s menopause is

  • Their partner
  • Their friends
  • The internet
  • Their physician

Nearly two thirds of men surveyed say they get knowledge about menopause from their friends. Time to find a more reliable and knowledgeable source?

2. The most common symptom of the menopause that men know about is

  • hot flashes
  • vaginal dryness
  • difficulty sleeping
  • lack of energy

93.7% of men surveyed cited hot flashes as the commonest symptom, with difficulty sleeping coming in second (54%) and lack of energy third(49%). Only 6% of men mentioned vaginal dryness as a symptom of the menopause.

3. True or False: more than one in four men surveyed thought there was no treatment for the menopause

  • true
  • false

True. 27.9% of men thought there is no treatment for menopause. Men with a higher level of education had significantly more knowledge than those with primary school education.

4. Which of the following statements are true about treating the menopause:

  • a couple’s shared knowledge and understanding of symptoms could help a woman improve her relationship and quality of life
  • men’s knowledge improves after educational programs
  • men do not discuss how they can help their partners through the menopause with health personnel is because health personnel do not ask them
  • when men do discuss the menopause with their partners, they can make a difference

All the above are true.

Most men report that the menopause negatively impacts them (77%), their partners (70%), and relationships (56%). Over three quarters of men who do engage in discussions with their partners believe that they make a difference. 

How did you score?

4 Things Men need to know about perimenopause and menopause.

First and most important – menopause does not happen overnight! It takes many years and begins with a “transition”, perimenopause. During perimenopause periods may become heavier or they may disappear one month and return the next; let’s just say they may become erratic. Hot flashes, insomnia, and vaginal dryness may start to make their appearance.  When periods disappear for at least 12 months your partner is likely in menopause.

Menopause and menopausal symptoms may vary from woman to woman.  Factors such as hormone levels, emotions, diet, and exercise, play a role in how a woman navigates through the menopausal years. So please– no comparing. Help your partner through those changes. Remember, intimacy is broader than sex. Take a long walk, join her in a massage, “date her again”. Supporting your partner during the “transition” and menopause will likely build your relationship.

Third, be aware that her body may  change. Yes, her weight may increase. There may be vaginal dryness as estrogen levels fall and having sex may be uncomfortable or even painful. Take it slow… and easy…. and consider using a personal lubricant and moisturizer.  Sensitivity will increase her self-confidence and making love will be more pleasurable.

Fourth, although it may seem that when your partner’s period stops it is totally liberating; NO more worrying about birth control. However, the other symptoms of menopause especially urinary frequency, urinary tract infections, vaginal dryness and painful sex may make her feel self-conscious and increase her anxiety. Think about the changes a man’s body undergoes while aging and have empathy.

How can you help your partner or wife during menopause?

  1. Talk with your partner about all of their symptoms, not just about problems with sexual intercourse.
  2. Acquaint yourself with the treatments available. According to The Men’s perception and Attitudes Toward Menopause (MATE) study, less than half of men surveyed (46%) were aware that there are treatment options for menopausal symptoms.
  3. Only 6% men are aware of the availability of vulvovaginal moisturizers to treat the daily symptoms. Buy some products for your partner.

FemmePharma’s vulvar moisturizer, Mia Vita™ Gel, and Mia Vita™ personal lubricant & moisturizer a vaginal moisturizer, provides relief from vaginal dryness, itching, burning, and other discomfort without the use of hormones. They are non-prescription gel that hydrate and protect delicate skin with ingredients naturally found in our bodies, such as hyaluronic acid and vitamin E. With regular use, it can make a big difference. Buy some for your partner today.

About the author
Dr. Deb has more than 20 years of experience in academic medicine leadership positions, delivering educational programs on women's health and primary care research for healthcare workers in the United States, Europe, Asia, and Australia.