Why Menopause May Be Worse For Millennials
No woman alive is going to tell you that menopause is easy. You can have the greatest life full of friends and family who love you, a social life that excites you, a career that you’re proud of, children who are actually nice to you and a home you really think deserves its own four-page-spread in Good Housekeeping, but none of that can protect you from the internal chaos that is menopause. No matter how perfect your surroundings are, you cannot avoid the insanity your interior is facing during menopause. That being said, certain trends and behaviors millennials are developing right now could make an already particularly trying change of life even more challenging. Here is why menopause could be so much worse for millennials.
We’re having children later
When women had children in their early twenties, they could count on their kids being all grown up and moved out well before menopause. Do you realize there was a time when 40-year-old women were already experiencing empty nest syndrome? Not millennials. Nope. Millennial women are having kids in their forties, meaning many of them face menopause and raising teenagers at the same time. That’s a recipe for disaster.
We’re buying homes much later
If you buy your home in your twenties or thirties, then by the time menopause hits, you’re very familiar with that house. You’ve gotten a handle on its quirks and flaws. And you’re way past the panic that comes with the realization you now have a mortgage. But millennials are buying houses later—many waiting until their forties. Translation: they cope with the terrifying buyer’s remorse that comes in the few years after buying your first home and menopause. At the same time.
Or, not buying homes them at all
Many millennials aren’t buying houses at all! They’d rather save the money for other things, like owning a car or traveling. But that could mean going through menopause in an apartment. An apartment. You know—those things where the tenants share walls and the neighbors have screaming babies and loud parties until 4 am? Some women will go through menopause in those conditions.
Our friends will be busy during menopause
Typically, menopausal women could turn to each other for support in the past. Their kids were moved out of the house, and they either weren’t working, or weren’t too involved in work. Now, when millennials go through menopause, their friends will be too busy with their careers and children to meet up for a much-needed vent session.
We really believe 50 is the new 30
Maybe 50 is the new 30 in the sense that we no longer have to feel like old maids just because we can’t shop at Forever 21. That stigma should definitely go. But we also cannot deny the fact that physical changes will happen during menopause—changes that will make it very difficult to live like we are 30. For example, we cannot drink the way we did when we were 30—we cannot add post-drinking blues in addition to the depression that can come with menopause.
Really, it’s not the new 30
We need more sleep, less alcohol, more comfortable shoes, better air conditioning and close relationships to survive menopause. Thirty-year-olds tend to sleep little, drink lots, wear stilettos, tolerate apartments with no air conditioning and have fleeting relationships. You can’t live like that during menopause.
We’ll have just finished paying student loans
Considering that some student loan re-payment plans last for 25 years, if you finish college at the age of 22, you could just finish paying off your loans at 47. If you go to graduate school, you’ll easily be paying off your loans throughout menopause and that’s not stress you need at that time.
Our marriages won’t be fully stable yet
Millennials are getting married later, many in their forties. When women marry in their twenties, then by the time menopause hits, they have a really nice, well-established foundation in their marriage. They’re not facing getting accustomed to married life and menopause—a dilemma millennials may deal with.
We’re always on Facebook
Facebook addiction starts young for millennials. By the time we’re nearing menopause, we’re hooked for life—we’re in deep. But scrolling through social media feeds usually produces more negative emotions than positive ones (unless you only follow pages about puppies). The menopausal woman does not need to see the enormous range of infuriating, depressing and terrifying information on social media every day in addition to suffering mood swings.
We’ll still be working out our parent issues
We’re the therapy generation. We are all on a personal journey, through therapy, to understand and relieve ourselves of any insecurities, neurosis, and fears that could be dictating our decisions. We usually have to analyze our parents to figure this all out. And that takes time. It’s certainly a good thing to do. But, we just might also wind up doing it while we’re going through menopause. That’s quite the roller coaster of emotions.
We sit around too much
Our jobs are keeping us in our seats more and more. Our jobs are keeping us indoors more and more. That means we’re missing out on two very important things that could help fight menopause symptoms: exercise, and vitamin D. And since the fifties is when a woman’s career is often at its pique, that means she is working longer hours, and spending even more time at her desk, indoors.
Whatever your views, I think we can all agree that the news hasn’t exactly been uplifting as of late. Even young, hopeful individuals become very upset by what they see in the news today. Now add menopause to those feelings.
Possibly global warming
If the world is getting hotter, that’s not good news for women experiencing hot flashes! Gulp.
We are the generation that marches! We’re active. We want our voices heard. So we are out there, in the streets, marching any time a policy is passed we aren’t happy about. How’s a woman supposed to go through menopause when she’s expected to march for eight hours once a month? In the sun? With hot flashes?
There is no menopause leave
Well, there never has been menopause leave in the workplace. But we’re just saying—there should be. Especially now that we know how much harder menopause will be on millennial women.