It’s a topic that’s been shrouded in secrecy for far too long. Menopause is a natural part of a woman’s life, but the stigma and discrimination surrounding it have made it a taboo subject. For too many women, experiencing menopause has meant feeling isolated and alone.
But we’re here to break the silence. Dr. Hema Divakar, Chair of the FIGO Committee on Well Woman Health and Care spoke about the prevalence of menopause discrimination and why it’s time to start talking about it.
According to Dr. Divakar, the discrimination against mature and menopausal women is deeply ingrained in our society. This includes the workplace, where older workers are often stereotyped as “experienced” but “high risk and inefficient.”
But it’s not just the workplace. The shame, stigma, and lack of understanding surrounding menopause can also impact intimate and intergenerational relationships. Women are left feeling isolated and alone, with no one to turn to for support.
So why has menopause been such a secret for so long? It’s a combination of factors, including a lack of reliable and accurate education and information about menopause. Proper access and open conversation will contribute to overcoming stigmas, reduce health inequalities and increase awareness.
But there’s hope. By raising awareness of menopause and its symptoms, we can start to break down the barriers that have kept it hidden for so long. “We can point this out to friends, family and colleagues. We can counter it by lobbying members of Parliament. We can build legal cases at the local, state or international levels when discrimination happens,” says Dr. Divakar.
It’s time to start talking about menopause openly and honestly. By breaking the silence, we can help women feel supported and empowered during this natural transition. So let’s start the conversation – together.