Menopause and Your Man – What Is He Feeling?

 

by Linda Franklin

 

Menopause and Your Man - What Is He Feeling?  Linda Franklin The Real Cougar WomanMenopause is a time of profound change for women, both physically and emotionally. But what about the husbands and partners we share our lives with? How are the changes we are going through affecting them?

It’s a subject that touches millions, but is rarely spoken about. Until now. In her new book, Sex, Meaning and The Menopause, psychotherapist Sue Brayne persuaded a group of men, all married to women who were going, or had gone, through menopause, to open up about their experiences.

Their stories show how menopause can cut right to the heart of a man’s sense of masculinity.

Women have each other to talk to or pick up the pieces when our worlds fall apart. But men don’t have that innate capacity. They may mumble to their friends about something that’s bothering them, but it’s rarely an open or honest conversation.

Most of the men featured in the book had never spoken about these things to anyone, but they were desperate for an outlet for their fears.

As one husband said, “its personal to talk like this, but I feel a sense of relief that I’ve been able to put it into words.”

One husband, 67, confessed he had an affair when his wife was going through menopause 13 years ago. While the father of four ended his transgression long ago, the emotion is still raw. ‘I don’t know if she was in denial about what she was experiencing, but it ended up with me shying away from speaking to her about anything to do with intimacy.

‘Only now can I see what a monumental change she went through. She moved from the role of wife, mother and lover to this matriarchal authority figure. That was a real challenge for me. Being married to a post-menopausal woman makes you face your own aging process. At the time, I didn’t understand any of this, so I reacted by falling in love with a much younger woman. And, then, of course, the damage is done.”

This might be an extreme example of the havoc the menopause can wreak, but I’m sure there are many men who will empathise with those who confessed they suddenly found their menopausal wives to be almost impossible to live with.

Some husbands found the change so dramatic they compared it to their wives undergoing a personality transplant. “I have no problem with my wife’s body or the fact she’s aging. So am I. In fact, I love the way she looks. She’s still a beautiful woman to me. But I get confused when she wants to get close to me because in the past this always led to sex, but now she rarely wants to make love.”

“I started to feel marginalized, especially when we ended up in separate bedrooms. I was servicing the family financially, eating with them and driving them around, but without having a relationship with my wife. It made me feel lonely, sad and angry.”

In the past ten years, divorces among the over-50s have triped, with the majority being filed by women

It’s clear that ignorance and confusion add to the problems couples suffer when a woman goes through  menopause. It’s so important to give men a chance to speak up — some women might be astonished to learn what they really think.

The Real Cougar Woman is a 5-carat diamond who knows the importance of taking care of her health, beauty, relationships, finances and spirituality.  Linda Franklin says,”there is no stopping a woman who has a strong belief system, passion and a dream. All things are possible”. Linda’s book, Don’t Ever Call Me Ma’am helps women of all ages tap into their power and live life to the fullest.

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BodyLogicMD’s Wellness Project Giveaway

by Linda Franklin

BodyLogicMD's Wellness Project Giveaway  Linda Franklin The Real Cougar WomaWe all love to get free stuff and here’s your opportunity to win a full year of comprehensive lab tests and consultations with a highly-trained physician.

In celebration of the 10-year anniversary of BodyLogicMD, a lucky winner, or two, will have the opportunity to experience balance and total wellness through the BodyLogicMD network – for free!

Participants enter by submitting a video to The Wellness Project, describing how symptoms of hormone imbalance and conditions of poor health have negatively impacted their lives.

Millions of men and women in the United States suffer from a variety of adverse conditions that negatively impact their health and quality of life. Many times these conditions, which range from hot flashes or weight gain to thyroid disorders or sexual dysfunction, are linked to a hormone imbalance. The physicians of the BodyLogicMD network know that it is possible to live life free of the aches, pains and discomfort of aging through bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT), balanced nutrition, routine fitness and stress management techniques.

Videos may be sad, hopeful, funny, sentimental or any combination that will effectively tell the participant’s story. Individuals may enter themselves or nominate someone they know. Videos will be judged by a panel of experts with influential backgrounds in the medical industry. These judges will narrow the videos submissions to 10 finalists and post to The Wellness Project Group Facebook page for voting by the general public.

The journey of each winner – from initial consultation through follow-up visits – will be documented through video and other mediums to give the public an inside look of the transformation that can be achieved through the pursuit of preventive health and long-term wellness. For more details visit BodyLogicMD.com/wellness-project.

I think this is an excellent opportunity to work with an medical expert on fine-tuning your body to run at maximum effectiveness.  I am a big fan of bio-identical hormones and I can tell you from first hand experience that the biggest benefit comes from your medical partner. It’s a team effort.

The Real Cougar Woman is a 5-carat diamond who knows the importance of taking care of her health, beauty, relationships, finances and spirituality. Linda Franklin says,”there is no stopping a woman who has a strong belief system, passion and a dream. All things are possible”. Linda’s book, Don’t Ever Call Me Ma’am helps women of all ages tap into their power and live life to the fullest.

Hormone Replacement – Changing Opinions

by Linda Franklin

Hormone Replacement - Changing Opinions Linda Franklin The Real Cougar WomanWomen who are close to menopause face few dangers from hormone-replacement therapy, and the benefits may outweigh the risks for those who are suffering from severe symptoms.

Finally something that makes sense is coming out.  A consensus of new analyses clarifying a decade of research since a big government study scared millions of women and their doctors away from using hormone therapy at menopause.

The Women’s Health Initiative—was halted in July, 2002, three years early, when researchers noticed an unexpectedly high rate of breast cancer and heart disease among women taking a popular brand of estrogen and progestin hormones women typically lose in menopause.

The original study wasn’t intended to assess the pros and cons of HT, but to explore whether giving hormones to older women would prevent heart disease, according to WHI researchers. Some 70% of women in the study were over age 60, an average 12 years past menopause. Younger HT users, suffering from hot flashes and other symptoms, were largely excluded.

“My menopausal patients were hysterical. They were calling saying, ‘I’m going to die!’ But this study really didn’t apply to them,” says Mary Jane Minkin, professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the Yale School of Medicine.

In 2002, 40 percent of post postmenopausal women in the U.S. using hormone therapy, today it is 20%.

Analyses that came out over the past decade showed that women 50 to 59 who started HT near menopause had fewer cardiovascular problems—and fewer deaths from any cause—than those who started years later. Another branch of the study showed that women who took estrogen only also had a lower risk of heart disease and breast cancer.

To see the what the latest research says about when women should consider taking hormone therapy check out this article.

The Real Cougar Woman is a 5-carat diamond who knows the importance of taking care of her health, beauty, relationships, finances and spirituality. Linda Franklin says,”there is no stopping a woman who has a strong belief system, passion and a dream. All things are possible”. Linda’s book, Don’t Ever Call Me Ma’am helps women of all ages tap into their power and live life to the fullest.

Conquering Menopausal Belly Fat

 
My friend Staness is an expert on menopause – in fact she wrote the bestselling book on the subject – The Menopause Makeover.   
 
Staness, has some great advice on how to conquer menopausal belly fat another just another one of those fun side effects women have to deal with.  I wanted to share this article she wrote  with you so you have a leg up.
 
According to the North American Menopause Society, more than 70% of women ages 55 to 75, and 65% of women ages 45 to 55 are overweight (BMI greater than 25).  More than 40% are obese (BMI greater or equal to 30). With the average age of natural menopause in the Western world being 51, it is no surprise many blame the menopause transition on weight gain and extra belly fat.

What causes weight gain and that unwanted belly fat during these years?  Until recently there was no scientific evidence that menopause was the culprit for your increased waist size.  But now there is some evidence that menopause may be related to changes in body composition and fat distribution.  Several studies have shown that menopause is associated with increased fat in the abdominal region as well as decreased lean body mass, independent of age.

While the jury is out deciding if menopause is guilty, aging and lifestyle are mostly responsible.  Lean body mass decreases with age, and burning fewer calories through less activity increase fat mass and weight gain.

Not getting enough sleep, whether suffering from stress or night sweats, can cause changes in serum leptin and ghrelin levels increasing your appetite.   68,000 women studied in the Nurses’ Health Study found that women who slept five hour or less gained 2.5 pounds.  Women sleeping six hours gained 1.6 pounds.  61% of peri- and postmenopausal women report suffering from insomnia. If you are suffering from night sweats affecting your sleep, discuss treatment management options with your healthcare provider. The optimal amount of sleep varies from person to person, but 6 to 9 hours of sleep is a good rule of thumb.

The good news? Mid-life belly fat can be managed!  Making lifestyle adjustments can put you in the healthy BMI category (18.5 to 24.9).

  • Eat lean proteins, low to medium glycemic carbohydrates and healthy fats, combined with exercise most days of the week for 30 to 60 minutes can do the trick.
  • Limit your intake of saturated and trans fat and cholesterol.
  • Adjust your portion sizes.
  • Do not over consume beverages with sugars and caffeine.
  • Consume alcohol in moderation – some research has shown that red wine can have health benefits.
  • Decrease salt and processed foods.
  • Stop smoking.
  • When you dine out, take half home for lunch tomorrow.

These are all good common-sense strategies that work for everyone, but they are non-negotiable for menopausal women.  It takes commitment and effort to make lasting change.  If you do the work, you will maintain a healthy weight and manage that unwanted belly fat.

This is also an important time to work closely with your healthcare provider.  Increased weight and belly fat can increase your risk of getting type 2 diabetes, CVD, stroke, hypertension, and some cancers.

It is important to set realistic goals.  If you expect to look like your 20s, you may be disappointed. With a loss of skin tone and muscle mass from aging you just won’t look that same naked, but you are not alone.  Men too suffer from similar aging frustrations.

Focus on health, and you will feel happier about your body.

 

The Real Cougar Woman is a 5-carat diamond who knows the importance of taking care of her health, beauty, relationships, finances and spirituality. Linda Franklin says,”there is no stopping a woman who has a strong belief system, passion and a dream. All things are possible”. Linda’s book, Don’t Ever Call Me Ma’am helps women of all ages tap into their power and live life to the fullest.

Faking Orgasm Doesn’t Work

By Linda Franklin

Faking Orgasm Doesn't Work Linda Franklin, The Real Cougar WomanMen might find this difficult to believe, but more than half of all women have faked an orgasm, according to a study published last week.  After questioning more than 400 women they found  53.9 per cent  had pretended to reach the heights of ectasy with their partner.  Many said they did it to preserve his male ego and prevent him from straying.

So why are so many women secretly dissatisfied with their sex lives?  

If you go to bed exhausted every night or fight over the smallest things with your partner, it will definitely have an impact on your sex drive. Sex has got to be fun and when it’s not you find any reason  to pass.  A lack of libido is a common problem, with an astonishing 30  per cent of women claiming to have no sex drive at all.

The lack of libido can be caused by other factors too, including illness or a decline in hormones, which is common during peri-menopause and menopause.

‘Libido is a complex issue — it’s a mix of brain, heart and hormones.  And, many women are too embarrassed to talk about it.  

Sex is something we do need to talk about, and the best place to do that is in the doctor’s office.  Not just any doctor, but a doctor who you trust and who is compassionate to your problem.  There are many answers to a low sex drive.  Some remedies are as easy as a progesterone cream or testosterone patch.  But, you need to know what works for you.

Sexual satisfaction is too delicious to go without. Find out how you can start enjoying one of the undeniable pleasures of life.

The Real Cougar Woman is a 5-carat diamond who knows the importance of taking care of her health, beauty, relationships, finances and spirituality. Linda Franklin says,”there is no stopping a woman who has a strong belief system, passion and a dream. All things are possible”. Linda’s book, Don’t Ever Call Me Ma’am helps women of all ages tap into their power and live life to the fullest.

Sexual Dysfunction and Diabetes

By Dr. Jennifer Landa

Sexual Dysfuction and Diabetes by Dr. Jennifer Landa For The Real Cougar WomanSexual dysfunction in female diabetics has only received attention within the last decade.. Nearly 40 percent of diabetic women experience some type of sexual dysfunction affecting both their desire and performance.

Unlike a man with diabetes, sexual dysfunction in diabetic females is most commonly linked to body image, depression and anxiety. In some cases, it may be attributed to more serious complications of the disease such as vascular damage, neuropathy or infections. Diabetic women who have experienced, or are also experiencing menopause, may be dealing with a dual challenge when it comes to overcoming sexual dysfunction.

Mind over Mattress

Studies have observed that women affected by diabetes have a low self-esteem and poor body image in comparison to women not affected by diabetes. This may be linked to depression and anxiety – which affects 60 percent of diabetic patients – and can literally tank your libido. Women who must wear a pump or check their blood sugar before sex may become self-conscious, reducing the likelihood that they will initiate or engage in sex. Traditional stressors that affect any woman in the bedroom – such as weight management – pile onto the reasons diabetic women experience sexual dysfunction.

The root cause of female sexual dysfunction in these cases can often be addressed with lifestyle changes and a trusted partner. A balanced diet and routine exercise are proven methods for controlling weight and improving mood.  Don’t be afraid to talk openly with your doctor about your sexual distress – some cases may be more severe and require a change in medication or additional counseling.  Don’t forget that communicating with your sexual partner can be a very effective way to alleviate the fears hindering your sexual function.

The Prescription

The most effective way to avoid sexual dysfunction related to diabetes is to properly manage the disease. Making an effort to live a healthy lifestyle and carefully monitoring your blood glucose levels will decrease your risk of neuropathy, infections and circulatory issues. You will also be among the fortunate women affected by diabetes that enjoy higher energy levels and less anxiety because they practice good diabetes management. In some cases, bioidentical hormone replacement therapy may be useful – adequate amounts of progesterone, testosterone and growth hormone play a role in the delicate regulation of blood glucose levels.

Women who experience vaginal dryness as part of their diabetes-related sexual dysfunction may be dealing with a hormonal imbalance. Low estrogen levels can occur in diabetic women and is a likely culprit in women who are also experiencing menopause. Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy is a solution that may be explored to correct this issue. If the dryness is related exclusively to diabetes, over-the-counter lubrications are also an effective choice.

There are answers, so do your research and find a doctor you trust.  Together you will find ways to rekindle the sparks of passion.

The Real Cougar Woman is a 5-carat diamond who knows the importance of taking care of her health, beauty, relationships, finances and spirituality. Linda Franklin says,”there is no stopping a woman who has a strong belief system, passion and a dream. All things are possible”. Linda’s book, Don’t Ever Call Me Ma’am helps women of all ages tap into their power and live life to the fullest.

Beauty Bash This Weekend

Beauty Bash by Linda Franklin The Real Cougar Woman

Beauty Bash

by Linda Franklin – The Real Cougar Woman

Fab Over Fifty  will host Beauty Bash, a two-day event at the Metropolitan Pavilion in New York City on October 1-2, 2011.  I will be there and I hope to see you there too. All my very special cougar women get discounted tickets for this extravaganza.  All you do is use “cougar 40” in the promo code when you register

FOF Beauty Bash is a hands-on, interactive, only-in-New-York-City-type event. It will bring together celebrity stylists; make-up artists; plastic surgeons; dermatologists; cosmetic dentists; beauty, fashion and fitness icons, as well as other specialists, for custom fittings, 1-on-1 consultations, live demonstrations and seminars on the latest beauty and wellness advances for FabOverFifty women. Attendees will sample the newest creams, colors, lotions, potions and serums; get insider tips, techniques and strategies designed especially for women over fifty. Which face cream really gets rid of wrinkles? Is my bra the right size for me? Should I get plastic surgery? How do I apply makeup to make me look younger? What can I do about my thinning hair?

Custom FOF Beauty Bash highlights include:

Mark Garrison, Celebrity Stylist –One of the world’s most sought-after hair stylists, Mark will be doing hair center stage for two days. He will solve your most difficult hair challenges, and provide complimentary cuts.

Le Mystere, Leader in Intimate Apparel – Get a custom and complimentary bra-fitting from the experts at Le Mystere, innovators in the intimate apparel space for their seamless, supportive and fashionable designs.

Jill Kirsh, Celebrity Makeup Artist – With just a few simple color tricks from Jill, you will look younger, more svelte, and radiant than ever. Meet one-on-one with Jill and watch her live color makeovers on the main stage.

Dr. Sharon Giese and Dr. Robert Gotkin, Cosmetic Surgeons –Meet privately in designated “doctor’s offices” at the FOF Beauty Bash with Dr. Sharon Giese or Dr. Robert Gotkin, two of New York’s most sought-after cosmetic surgeons, and ask them your biggest beauty questions. Dr. Giese’s “Natural Lift” is touted as “the future of plastic surgery” by Dr. Oz, and Dr. Gotkin was named “One of New York’s best doctors” by New York Magazine.

Elline Surianello, Master Hairapist – Elline will analyze your tresses so you can go from flat or frizzy to fantastic in less time than it takes to unplug the dryer. Walk away with Elline’s complimentary hairapy gift package.

Dr. Ellen Marmur, Dermatologist – In just minutes, Dr. Marmur could save your life with a complimentary body check. She’ll put your mind at ease about melanoma, and other forms of skin cancer that can be detected in the earliest stages. Dr. Marmur is associated with New York’s Mount Sinai Hospital and is one of the most respected doctors in the dermatological field. She has performed extensive research on the development of melanoma vaccines.

As an added bonus, attendees also will receive a gift bag filled with more than $150 worth of today’s hottest beauty products, as well as exclusive offers from partners, including Soft Surroundings, Molton Brown, Cynthia Rowland Beauty Systems, Perricone and many more.

To learn more, you can visit the Beauty Bash website at www.faboverfifty.com

The Real Cougar Woman is a 5-carat diamond who knows the importance of taking care of her health, beauty, relationships, finances and spirituality.  Linda Franklin says,”there is no stopping a woman who has a strong belief system, passion and a dream. All things are possible”. Linda’s book, Don’t Ever Call Me Ma’am helps women of all ages tap into their power and live life to the fullest.