Menopause Is Not A Disease, So Why Do We Treat It As Such
Why do so many of us believe (& behave like) our desire and our pleasure is not something of great value?
After 2.5 decades of hearing women’s stories, it’s become clear to me that we’ve been led astray and that it’s vital we come back into right relationship to our female bodies, especially if we have any negative views or experiences with menopause.
In our society at large, there is a general sense of sexual ageism, as though turn-on, orgasm and pleasure are things for the youth.
To make matters worse, we are actually funding a multi-billion dollar industry that profits off our insecurities and belief that menopause is a ‘disease’ that should be addressed both with prescriptions and surgery.
How did this happen and what can we do now?
There are many factors at play here, including how we are socialized as little girls and young women, but for the scope of this article, I’m only highlighting three points:
- First of all, the advent of birth control enabled women to experience new found sexual liberation in ways never previously possible. However, just because we could have more sex, doesn’t mean that it was great sex.
- Then there’s the argument of Vaginal vs. clitoral orgasms, as if we need to choose one over the other and ignore the full spectrum of our erotic range.
- To add fuel to our growing fire, some ‘unknown’ age limit was placed on sex, as though it has an expiry date.
So lack of skill, confusion about pleasure, and fear of aging has left us in quite a quandary. One that leaves us giving up on our pleasure rather than rebelliously investigating our untapped erotic potential.
All biological creatures have a simple program: expanding towards that which feels good and contracting away from that which feels bad. This is also true for humans, except that we can consciously choose to investigate things that feel bad and move towards them. That said, it is still not conducive to move into pleasure when our systems are in fight or flight. Furthermore, generally our modern lifestyle is stress, stress, and more stress along with an eternally growing to-do list that we use to keep ourselves from feeling the complete range of our sensitive, wild, emotional and sensual selves.
Our sexual education warns us about the dangers of STIs and pregnancy, ignoring the crucial part about understanding our own pleasure and sensuality. Fast forward many decades of putting everyone else’s needs first on top of layers of self-criticism, heartache and loneliness, and we have the perfect formula to ‘shut down’.
Menopause, unlike popular consent, is not an end. It is an invitation, a second chance, to claim our sexual sovereignty, once and for all.
3 Radical Steps to Sage-ing Gracefully:
1. Rebel. Rebel. Rebel. Do not believe what you hear and read, just because it’s common as an idea doesn’t mean it’s the truth. Question everything you believe about yourself, desire, and sexuality.
2. Desire can’t die, but she does hibernate. To wake up our desire is to say YES to life, YES to living, YES to enjoying all of our remaining moments. It means understanding that life is precious and that the pure act of breathing alone is a gift. And when we connect with ourselves and life consciously, an entire new world of beauty and abundance offers itself up to us. Be willing to let yourself DARE to desire because what you yearn for matters.
3. If you don’t use it, you lose it. Even if you are in a sexless marriage, that’s not an excuse to let yourself dry out and atrophy. Our pelvic floor and hormonal well-being requires attention. Doing simple self-care practices on a daily basis can rejuvenate our genitals and rekindle our pleasure pathways. Pleasure is not optional. When we feel good, we are healthier. When we have regular orgasms, alone or with another, we are less depressed and more naturally joyful and creative.
Just because our current society doesn’t value or support the sexual maturity process doesn’t mean we can’t choose to do so for ourselves.
Tending to our hearts and bodies is like tending a beautiful garden. Regular care means light work and the enjoyment of great beauty. If we abandon our garden, it’s much harder to get things flourishing again. It is possible, but it will take loving determination.
If you have said you are too old, too fat, too skinny, too this or too that, it’s time to bust free from these limited ways of perceiving yourself and time to delight in the cultivation of a gourmet relationship with yourself and your amazingly alive and intelligent body.
To learn more on the truth of menopause as well as gain simple practices to support your life-long libido and vitality, check out my Sexy Menopause training where Dr. Wickman, a luminary Ob-Gyn and myself share the best of our wisdom to support you to enjoy your power stage of life!
I agree that menopause is something to be celebrated and not just tolerated. This coming from a mid 50s woman, in a sexless marriage that continues to live and learn about my own sexual proclivities.