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Supporting someone through the menopause.

If you have a friend, family member, or colleague who may be experiencing menopause or perimenopause, it’s essential to educate yourself about how you can be a source of support.

Menopause can bring about a multitude of physical and emotional changes for women, making it a complex and challenging phase of life. There are various things we can do to support those who are experiencing the menopause. Being flexible and understanding is key!

Without proper support, some women may consider leaving the workforce. Implementing workplace policies that promote flexibility can help women stay engaged in their careers.

Learn about Menopause: The first step is having an awareness! It is important to learn what menopause is and how it may affect someone who is experiencing it. Start by becoming informed. It enables you to better understand what they might be going through, whether they are your partner, family member, friend, or colleague. Start by familiarising yourself with the various symptoms of menopause, its potential impact, and the available treatments and support options.

Listen Actively: Effective communication is paramount. There may be topics the person does not want to discuss, but simply letting them know you’re there for support can make an enormous difference. Keep in mind that each person’s menopause journey is unique, so avoid making assumptions.

Offer Encouragement: Menopause can impact a woman’s self-esteem, and they may not feel like their usual self. Providing words of encouragement can boost spirits and empower the individual. Encouraging engagement with a variety of people and activities can also be helpful.

Stay Active: Leading an active, healthy lifestyle can alleviate some menopause symptoms. Activities like walking, swimming, and yoga are great for staying active! Reducing alcohol consumption and quitting smoking can also help alleviate symptoms.

Sexual Wellbeing and Intimacy: Menopause can lead to a decreased sex drive and other sexual issues due to hormonal changes. These changes can be distressing for both the person experiencing them and their partner. As a couple, it’s important to discuss these concerns openly and explore available treatment options. Nurturing your emotional connection and finding alternative ways to be close can strengthen your relationship. Remember that pregnancy can still be possible during perimenopause, so discussing contraception is also important.

Menopause in the Workplace: Many women find managing menopause symptoms in the workplace to be challenging, often struggling to discuss menopause openly at work. It’s crucial to create an environment where women feel supported in continuing their careers during menopause. Managers and organizations can make small adjustments to ensure workplaces are accommodating and healthy for women going through this transition.

Supporting Staff: Menopause is something that all women will go through. By helping women manage symptoms at work, employers can contribute to a positive workplace environment. Offering practical support can be incredibly beneficial.

Furthermore, acknowledging that menopause is a deeply personal experience for countless women underscores the significance of endorsing initiatives like Menopause Cafes and ensuring access to support resources that extend beyond just direct supervisors. Understanding the legal protections regarding menopausal symptoms is also crucial for managers and colleagues alike.

Menopause is natural, and offering support during this journey can make a world of difference. By educating ourselves, listening actively, providing encouragement, and promoting an open dialogue about menopause, we can create a more compassionate and understanding society. Whether it’s within our families, friendships, or workplaces, let’s stand together to ensure that menopause is a time of empowerment, support, and well-being for all women. Together, we can navigate the challenges and celebrate the strengths that come with this remarkable transition.

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Experiencing the menopause and how the Electrical Industries Charity can help

Around half of the world’s population will go through menopause yet for a lot of us menopause is still a taboo topic.

Experiencing menopause can be challenging especially coupled with other personal or workplace stressors. The electrical and energy sector is 85% male and consequently a lot of those who live with menopausal symptoms cannot find support within their work environment. The Electrical Industries Charity is here to support those in the sector who may be struggling with menopause and the symptoms, both physical and mental, that it can cause.

Lisa had worked in electrical engineering and design for 12 years she enjoyed work and had always felt well-supported within her work environment. Lisa was enjoying her thirties and believed she had plenty of time to have children and start a family.

A few weeks after her 35th birthday Lisa began to experience hot flushes, night sweats, difficulty sleeping and a reduced libido. Lisa initially discarded her symptoms but after doing some online research she established that she may be experiencing early onset menopause.

Lisa was at a loss, she felt out of control and betrayed by her body. Lisa felt her partner would resent her and was afraid to tell him as she feared she could no longer have children. Not sure who to turn to Lisa contacted the support team at The Electrical Industries Charity. Lisa was assigned a caseworker and the Charity established Lisa needed external support for both her physical and mental health.

Fearful to make the first steps, Lisa asked her case worker to contact her GP surgery. The Electrical Industries Charity requested Lisa’s GP run suitable tests to establish if she was actually experiencing early onset menopause. Lisa was subsequently given a bone density test, blood test and genetic testing. The Charity also encouraged Lisa to speak to her partner and be open about what she was experiencing.

Although Lisa’s caseworker understood it was daunting and sympathised with her worry it was important for Lisa to be honest. After establishing she was suffering with early onset menopause Lisa spoke to her partner. While he was understandably surprised and upset, he did not reject Lisa, instead, he supported her in her next steps and communication with the Charity.

Lisa was experiencing fairly severe mood swings and found herself far more irritable. The Charity discussed Hormonal Replacement Therapy (HRT), a treatment which replaces low levels hormones during the menopause. The HRT helped to ease Lisa’s symptoms including hot flushes, mood swings and night sweats plus her libido returned.

Although Lisa’s physical symptoms were eased, and her partner was incredibly supportive Lisa was still struggling to come to terms with the profound sense of loss she felt. The Electrical Industries Charity sourced and funded a therapist for Lisa so she could work through her feelings of loss and hopelessness. Lisa partook in four funded therapy sessions and she is now focusing on the things she can control and change in her life.

Since undertaking HRT and therapy sessions Lisa is in a much better place. Lisa and her partner have since become fosterers and have enjoyed nurturing several children on both a short term and longer-term basis.

The Electrical Industries Charity support team have since closed Lisa’s case, but Lisa regularly sends updates and has even taken part in challenge events to support the charity.

The Electrical Industries Charity can be your support line. If you are struggling with a diagnosis, symptoms of a diagnosis or emotionally please contact the support team on or call 0800 652 1618.