What Should You Tell Your Husband, Lover, or Partner About Perimenopause and Menopause?

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What does your partner think of perimenopause and menopause?

Does he/she understand menopause? I mean, really understand menopause?

My husband David, was completely in the dark about what to expect when I hit perimenopause and menopause. Boy, talk about being “blindsided!” When our relationship was hit with a torrent of hot flashes, tremendous mood swings and sleepless and sex-less nights, he was more than flummoxed.

Why was I so moody? Why did everything he do upset me so? Why didn’t I want to be intimate with him anymore? These changes can be so confusing. David wasn’t sure if my feelings for him had changed or if he had done something to incite my bitchy demeanor. Either way, he feared it would never go away. He wanted our relationship back, but had no idea as to what the cause or cure was.

David said that dealing with and trying to understand my  perimenopause and menopause was more challenging than PMS. “It doesn’t come and go every 28 days or so… once you’re in, there’s no turning back, so you can’t rationalize away the symptoms,” David says. “You can’t just dismiss the symptoms of menopause as ‘it’s just that time of month’ and wait for day eight to roll around.”

Finally, though, my husband and I sought out a perimenopause and menopause specialist, and together we both found hormone happiness. We learned that the symptoms our relationship was suffering from were actually symptoms of perimenopause. And with proper medical care, the symptoms faded away. Together and as co-participants, we educated ourselves on the myriad of menopausal symptoms, de-mystifying this time in our lives. Information is power!

Menopausal women aren’t the only ones who need to understand menopause.  You are one-half of the relationship (and, let’s be honest: sometimes even more than that!), and when that half changes, it changes the relationship right along with it. For my husband and me, going together to see a menopause specialist was a game-changer in how we approached this time in our lives together. Now, our relationship is even stronger than it was before.

Open up the conversation with the love of your life with these top three things every woman should tell her partner about menopause:

1. This Is Hard For Me: As women, we try to take everything that life throws at us in giant, superhuman strides. But menopause isn’t a road best traveled solo. So don’t try to do it that way! Be honest about how you feel both physically and emotionally. Even once you conquer hot flashes, mood swings, and the various other symptoms of menopause, coping with the loss of fertility can be difficult for many women. You deserve every feeling. Don’t discount them.

2. It’s Not You, It’s My Hormones: Let’s face it, when riding the hormonal highs and lows of menopause, we can say and do some pretty hurtful things. Sometimes they shock even us. So imagine how our partners feel when they become the target of our fury! Before my husband and I realized menopause’s full effects, he felt like he had done something wrong. That couldn’t have been further from the truth!

3. I’m Still Attracted To You: It is important that your lover understands that when your estrogen levels begin to plummet, your vagina might go from frolicking on a tropical island to being spiteful and stranded in the Mojave Desert. When this happens, sex can hurt! This can be quite disturbing to a couple that is normally very sexually active and satisfied. But do not fret, lovers, there is help for this! With a little lube and/or LET, you can be back frolicking on the beach in no time.

You can learn more about how to deal with hot flashes, mood swings, insomnia, painful sex, and the other myriad of menopausal symptoms in my FREE eBook, MENOPAUSE MONDAYS The Girlfriend’s Guide to Surviving and Thriving During Perimenopause and Menopause

It’s no secret that communication is the key to happy, healthy relationships. So start talking! Trust me; you’ll both be so glad you did!

 Suffering in silence is OUT! Reaching out is IN!




After struggling with her own severe menopause symptoms and doing years of research, Ellen resolved to share what she learned from experts and her own trial and error. Her goal was to replace the confusion, embarrassment, and symptoms millions of women go through–before, during, and after menopause–with the medically sound solutions she discovered. Her passion to become a “sister” and confidant to all women fueled Ellen’s first book, Shmirshky: the pursuit of hormone happiness. As a result of the overwhelming response from her burgeoning audiences and followers’ requests for empowering information they could trust, Ellen’s weekly blog, Menopause MondaysTM, was born.

  • My GYM Dr. Cynthia Krause is one of the top menopause specialists in NYC and I still do not see her on your list of recommended specialists. I have reached out before and I also asked her office to fax her qualifications to you. I feel you have an obligation to respond, update your list frequently, and ultimately provide a list of the top specialists. Dr Krause a is leading GYN and menopause specialist in one and affiliated with Mt. Sinai hospital. I hope to hear from you. Thank you.

    • Ellen Dolgen

      Suzanne, I am so sorry I missed this! My Menopause Doctor Directory is composed of doctors recommended by the sisterhood. I am very happy to add Dr. Krause to the list per your recommendation. Thanks for circling back with me. I try to answer every email myself….sometimes I miss a few things here and there. I was crazy busy writing my new free eBook these past 8 months.

  • Linda Bailey

    Hi Ellen,
    I emailed you a few months ago to tell you how I have been suffering with night sweats for 16 years. You suggested Relizen to see if it could help alleviate some of the problem. I tried it and have finished 3 months of the product. My night sweats are worse than ever. I eat right, exercise and just can’t seem to figure out how to get past this. Just wanted to update you and thank you again for your help.

    • Ellen Dolgen

      I am so sorry that the Relizen was not helpful. Many women have emailed me that it was helpful to them, but there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Sometimes you have to try many things before you hit the jackpot! Please download my free eBook and go to the hot flashe chapter for a list of options that you might want to discuss with your menopause specialist. If you don’t have a good menopause specialist, there are also tips on how to find one. You can download my free eBook here. Good Luck! Don’t give up until you feel better!

      • Linda Bailey

        Thanks so much Ellen, I will do that.

      • Can I offer to send you or Linda some Crila for Menopause for her to try? Crila is an estrogen-free herbal supplement from Crinum latifolium grown in Vietnam. I’d love to share more information about it.

        • Ellen Dolgen

          I am not at all familiar with crinum latifolium. Can you send me the trials done in women?

  • I was watching the new Jane Fonda Lily Tomlin Netflix series and they discussed this on an episode–how fun it was to see this topic on TV sit com! If you haven’t watched Grace and Frankie, you should.

    • Ellen Dolgen

      How GREAT, Carol! I have watched the show…..it is hilarious!