What’s The Connection Between Menopause And Anger Toward Husbands?
By: Darby Faubion
Updated June 29, 2020
Medically Reviewed By: Kelly L. Burns, MA, LPC, ATR-P
For some couples, menopause and anger toward husbands seem to go together. This may make it hard for the husband to be supportive, and it certainly isn't easy for the woman either. Not every menopausal woman is angry, but for those who are, life can be very difficult. The factors involved can't always be erased, but there are things you can do to make this time easier for both of you. Here's a glimpse into why this happens and what you can do about it.
Why Is She So Angry?
If you've been a supportive husband throughout your marriage, you may be puzzled when your wife goes through menopause. Suddenly, she may not accept your kindness. She may argue with you, needlessly. Maybe you feel she's unfair to you. The truth is that there are some very good reasons for her to feel angry, and many of them probably have little to do with you. The following are a few of the most common anger triggers for menopausal women.
Few Understand Her Plight
People talk about menopause now more than they did 50 years ago. Yet still, many people don't know much about it unless they've experienced it. When you feel no one understands what you're going through, it might make you irritable at any age.
And, if you do a little reading and think you understand it perfectly, you might make her angry in another way. Interpreting everything she says, does, and feels like a sign of menopause invalidates her as a complex human person. Even though she may be experiencing menopause symptoms, she wants you to remember that, in most ways, she's still the same person she was before it started.
Her Periods Are Unpredictable
At first, the only problem might be changes in her period, but that can be very distressing. She no longer knows when to expect her period because it may not be regular anymore. It may be heavier or lighter than usual. It may last longer or shorter than usual. She may go for six months without a period and then have another one. The unpredictability can make her feel she no longer has any control over her own body.
Hot flashes, night sweats, and chills can make her feel very uncomfortable all day and all night. These symptoms may be partly relieved with hormone replacement therapy or natural remedies. However, many women still have them, even if the treatment does reduce their severity.
Her Body is Changing in Unpredictable Ways
The reasons behind the discomforts listed above like night sweats and chills are due to a woman's body going through its various changes during the stage of life. The woman's body is preparing for menstruation cycles to end which can cause fluctuations in weight. These fluctuations can include unpredictable gain loss. These weight changes may be related to the fact that her pre-menopausal eating habits are also changing. In other words, a woman going through menopause may be feeling like her body is running at one-hundred miles an hour -- while she's standing perfectly still.Sex May Be More Difficult
Sex May Be More Difficult
There are a couple of reasons why she may be having trouble with sex. First, her vagina may get drier. That can lead to painful or uncomfortable intercourse. She may have vaginal infections more often. And, her sex drive may decrease.
Bladder Control May Become A Problem
During menopause, many women begin to have problems with urinary incontinence. They try to exercise, they sneeze or cough, or they have a good laugh, and suddenly they're leaking urine. At other times, they may have a hard time getting to the bathroom in time. They may have bladder infections more often, too. All this is not only uncomfortable, but she may feel deeply humiliated about it.
She Isn't Sleeping Well
About the same age as menopause usually happens, women start having trouble sleeping. They may have problems falling asleep, staying asleep, or waking up during the night. If they're having night sweats, that can wake them up, as well. And, if the sweating was profuse, now they have to change the bed before they can go back to sleep. The lack of adequate sleep can make her feel exhausted and unhappy.
She's Dealing With Changing Moods
Menopause is often associated with moodiness, and there is some truth in that. The reason that happens is unclear. The exhaustion, the stress of a changing family, and just dealing with all the symptoms of menopause can all affect her mood.
Also, her body is going through a major chemical change. Her estrogen is diminishing. That's significant in terms of her mood because estrogen controls the production of serotonin in the brain. If her serotonin is decreased, she's probably going to find it hard to be in a good mood all the time. When you think about it, it is no surprise that menopause can affect moods.
You're Getting Older, Too
Unless you're much younger than your wife, you may be going through some changes yourself. You may be at an age when you realize you have more years behind you than ahead of you. You may also notice changes in your physical body as well. Trips to the bathroom may become more frequent as other symptoms of aging like greying hair or a sudden need for prescription reading glasses may be happening at this time in your life too.
What does all this have to do with her menopausal anger? Maybe nothing except that if you already feel bad about yourself and your life, it may be harder for you to have the emotional stability to be there for her.
What Can You Do?
You may want to fix everything for her, but you won't be able to get rid of all the problems she's facing completely. You may not be able to keep her from being angry from time to time, either. But there are ways you can help.
The most important thing you can do if your wife is going through menopause is to be compassionate. Try to imagine how you would feel if these things were happening to you. Keep doing kind things for her to show her you still care. If you're committed to being a compassionate partner, the rest of these tips will come more easily.
Make It Easy For Her To Talk
Your wife may be carrying around a lot of uncomfortable emotions during menopause. And, if she feels you won't understand, she might not even try to share them with you. But, hiding strong feelings typically doesn't result in a better relationship.
So, ask her how she's feeling. Then, listen carefully. Summarize what she said and ask if that's right. Tell her you're there for her in each situation she describes. When she comes to you, make time to really pay attention to what she has to say. Engage with her on a deep, personal level.
Reduce Her Sexual Discomfort
Your sexual relationship doesn't have to cause arguments or disagreements. Go with her to a doctor to learn ways to make it easier for both of you. Accept that sex might not happen as often as before. Show your affection in other ways, like hugging, kissing, or even just holding her hand during a movie.
Exercise With Her
Telling your wife that she needs to exercise will just make her angrier, in most cases. Yet, exercise will help reduce the increased risk of heart disease that comes with menopause. It will also make her feel better about herself. And, if you do it with her, she'll feel better about you, too. Do some low-impact cardio together, take a Sunday hike, or bicycle together to the park. Avoid being too competitive or judgmental. Instead, think of it as a way to have fun with her.
Encourage Her To Engage In Creative Activities
Your wife may feel angry during menopause, no matter what you do or what she does. However, if she gets involved in a creative activity, she can channel that anger into something positive. Encourage her to take up a creative hobby like writing, painting, or gardening. Let her use these outlets to get her angry feelings out. Then, show your admiration for her work on each project.
Take Care of Yourself Better
During this difficult time, staying healthy can help you deal with any anger that comes up between you. So, eat healthy foods, exercise, and get enough sleep. Practice mindfulness meditation so you can reduce the effect of any turmoil in the household. When you're at your best, you'll be able to support her more easily.
If you can't deal with the anger anymore, and all your efforts seem wasted, it might be time to seek therapy. Talking to a couples' therapist can help you both understand each other better. Your therapist can help you learn to make better choices in the way you treat each other. They can guide you as you discover new ways to interact. Through the process, her anger may eventually diminish, and your relationship may blossom like never before.
You can talk to a counselor together easily through BetterHelp for online therapy. The sooner you begin, the sooner you can start on the path to a happier, more fulfilling marriage. With BetterHelp, you don't have to worry about sitting in traffic or taking time out of your day to drive to an appointment. You and your partner can access BetterHelp from the comfort and privacy of your own homes. Read below for some reviews of BetterHelp counselors, from people experiencing similar issues.
"Kimberly is supporting and caring. She listens and gives tips on how to make, respond, and control the situations you are going through. She responds quickly. You will feel very comfortable to talk to her. Highly recommended!"
"I was skeptical of online counseling before I met Jyl. She changed my mind completely. I feel like she truly cares about my well being! She addresses every issue that arises with a non-biased view and then gives me the tools I need to use to work on issues when they arise! I am forever grateful for her in helping me during this difficult time of my life! She has me smiling at the end of every session, even if the beginning I was in tears!! She helps me pick up and get out of my own head and helps me believe in myself and gives me the tools to grab life and make the best out of each and every day!"
The physical and emotional changes that occur during menopause can feel quite frustrating, especially when you feel anger toward loved ones. It's important to remember that you are not alone. Knowing what to expect and when to seek help are important. With the right tools, you and your partner can move forward through menopause, and enjoy a fulfilling, lasting relationship. Take the first step today.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Can menopause make you angry?
There is a chance that menopause can make you angry. This is due to the fact that the changes in hormone levels can alter your moods. You may experience other moods as well, and not just anger. Menopause anger may be something you have heard about and it is possible, but in many cases, it is no cause for concern.
What helps with menopause irritability?
When you are experiencing irritability in relation to menopause, there are things you can do to ease these menopausal symptoms. For example, you can improve your sleeping, eat right, exercise, and limit the amount of stress in your life. These things can also help alleviate other symptoms of menopause.
What is the hormone for anger?
The hormone that is responsible for anger is thought to be testosterone. Menopause may impact the amount of testosterone in your body, which can lead to changes in mood and other things that you might not want.
How long do menopause mood swings last?
Mood swings associated with menopause can last the whole time someone is experiencing menopause. A menopause affect like this is caused by changes in hormone levels, which can last quite a while when someone is going through this change.
What causes irritability in menopause?
Irritability and changes in mood during menopause are usually caused by the fluctuation of hormones, as well as the other changes that are taking place in a woman’s body. Irritability is one of the most common menopause symptoms to look out for. Anger during menopause is almost something that is expected.
Why am I so angry all the time?
Menopause and anger go hand in hand, since you may experience irritability when you are experiencing menopause. If you want menopause relief, there is evidence to suggest that essential oils provide menopause relief. A few oils to try are lavender and mint. Otherwise, healthy outlets for anger include physical exercise, deep breathing, or hobbies you can immerse yourself in, like painting or gardening.
What helps with menopause mood swings?
There are a couple of techniques you can try to get menopause relief. One is essential oils. Essential oils provide menopause relief and are thought to help people be able to relax better. You may also want to look into vitamins for menopause. These may be able to help you transition into menopause easier, which can be a relief to you. Moreover, you can do some research and see what the best menopause books are. They will be able to provide you with more information and menopause tips for symptom to follow. You should never take any supplements without consulting with your doctor first.
Can menopause cause mental breakdown?
It is possible for menopause to cause a mental breakdown, but it may happen more frequently in people that have already been diagnosed with a mental disorder. Menopause can disrupt daily life, and anytime that happens, there is a chance that someone can have a mental breakdown. If you are concerned about this happening to you, talk to your doctor, so you can learn how menopause will affect you.
Can menopause change your personality?
One of the symptoms of menopause is that it can change your personality. You may not be as agreeable as you once were, and you may have periods of intense anger. Menopause may impact other parts of your personality as well, where you become more open and less inhibited. Menopause books should show menopause symptoms and explain what to expect, so you might want to pick some up for yourself. There is evidence to support that light on menopause can make a difference. For example, light therapy is used by some women to lessen symptoms.
What are the three types of anger?
The three types of anger are passive aggression, open aggression, and assertive. Passive aggression takes place when someone doesn’t want to confront what is making them angry. Open aggression occurs when people aren’t concerned about getting in a fight or getting physical. Assertive anger takes place when you are able to listen and work out a situation, no matter how angry you are. If you are affected by menopause anger, you may want to concentrate on assertive anger when you can, so you will be able to get along with others more effectively.
What causes anger in the brain?
In the brain, anger is thought to be controlled by the amygdala. This is the section that is responsible for processing anger and fear. It may be that the amygdala is greatly affected by menopause. Keep in mind that essential oils provide menopause relief and there are other things you can check out that may help as well. When you do your own research, you might be able to transition into menopause easier.
What causes anger chemically?
Anger is thought to be caused by an uptick in testosterone. At the same time, serotonin plays a part as well, since it is tasked with regulating anger. If you are experiencing menopause and anger, you may need to consider getting these hormone levels evaluated. When you speak to a health care provider, they will be able to walk you through menopause symptoms and explain what is going on with your hormones and moods.
What is the last stage of menopause?
The term menopause refers to the end of your periods, as in they have stopped and won’t return. However, it can be a long period of time before menopausal symptoms end. Menopause can disrupt daily life, and these symptoms are what will affect you the most. Consider looking into techniques that can provide menopause relief for common menopause symptoms, while you are affected by it. Light on menopause is something that should be looked at, since light therapy techniques are now being used to alleviate certain symptoms.
What is the average age for menopause to end?
Again, the term menopause refers to an end to your periods. This takes place after you have not had a period for 12 months. This generally happens around age 50. The symptoms of menopause associated with the condition may stick around for years after your periods end.
How do you know when menopause is over?
You will know when menopause is over once menopause symptoms subside. Once you stop having hot flashes, mood swings, and other symptoms that you have noted, you will know that your menopause symptoms have disappeared. You can check with your doctor for more information about this. They may also be able to recommend menopause books, which will allow you to learn more about the process.
Can menopause cause extreme fatigue?
One of the many menopause symptoms may be extreme fatigue. If you find yourself very tired as you go through menopause, this is not a cause for concern. There are products that provide menopause relief that you can look into and find more information about. Light on menopause may also be used for helping you sleep. Ask your doctor about light therapy to treat menopause. Essential oils provide menopause relief as well and may help you sleep.
Does menopause make you tired and depressed?
Menopause is able to affect your moods, so menopause can make you tired and depressed. You should consider the way menopause affect you and talk to your physician about it if the symptoms are causing you distress. They may be able to provide menopause tips for symptom you are experiencing.
What Mental Illness Causes Anger?
Many mental illnesses may have anger as a symptom. This doesn’t mean that they cause anger, but people that are affected by certain mental conditions may experience anger if they have ADHD, BPD, or NPD. People may also become angry when they are experiencing menopause, as it is a one of the many menopause symptoms.
What do you call a person who gets angry easily?
You may call someone that gets angry irritable. They may also be known as a hothead. It is more productive to see if it can be determined why someone is angry before resulting to name-calling, however. For example, if a woman is going through perimenopause and is angry, you might want to look into perimenopause symptom treatments, which may be able to provide menopause relief and ease certain problematic symptoms.
How do you deal with someone who is always angry?
If someone you care about is angry all the time, it is best to remember to be patient with them. You should always be as calm as possible when you talk to them and try to see their point of view. They may have something bothering them or weighing them down, which is causing them to be angry. Anger is one of the most common menopause symptoms, and it is also a symptom for many other conditions.
What is perimenopausal rage?
When perimenopause starts, it means that a woman’s body begins to produce less estrogen, and other changes are taking place as well. This indicates that there is a change in hormones, which can lead to mood swings, or “rage.” If you find yourself angry during perimenopause, consider seeking advice on perimenopause symptom and perimenopause symptom treatments.
Can menopause affect your mental health?
Menopause is able to affect your mental health. For example, since there are hormone changes, this can cause other mental conditions to be exhibited. Be sure to have yourself checked out if your menopause symptoms feel like they are severe.
Do you cry a lot during menopause?
You may cry a lot during perimenopause and menopause because of the changes regarding hormone levels. If this is something that is affecting you greatly, consider getting advice on perimenopause symptom. You may be able to keep your emotions in check easier once you understand what is going on with your body.
Can you go crazy from menopause?
It is possible to “go crazy” from menopause, but this isn’t something that should happen to you. If you are feeling that you are overwhelmed as you go through menopause, it is vital to seek professional support. There is menopause support for you, which is designed to help you get through this time in your life.
Can menopause trigger bipolar?
Menopause cannot “trigger” bipolar disorder, if you do not already have the condition. If you do have bipolar disorder, it is possible that menopause can exacerbate bipolar symptoms. Menopause symptoms can be very pronounced in some women, so you may simply be experiencing the symptoms of this condition when you think you are affected by bipolar.
What happens to your brain during menopause?
The menopause effect on your brain can be substantial. As your hormones start to change, this can lead to brain fog and can change your personality as well. It is important to learn how menopause can and will affect you, so you will be able to notice them symptoms if you experience them.
Is life better after menopause?
After menopause, many women feel better as they have gotten menopause relief. At the same time, after you go through menopause, there are many changes that have taken place in your body, which can make you more vulnerable to conditions like osteoporosis. This is something to think about and consider. You may want to pick up some of the best menopause books out there, so you can read all about how women handle perimenopause and menopause successfully.
Can menopause cause marriage problems?
There is a possibility that menopause can cause marriage problems, but this is usually not the cause. When there are underlying problems in marriages, menopause may bring them to the surface. When you have a partner that you can communicate with, you may be able to get through menopause easier. A licensed therapist can help you develop tools to strengthen your relationship throughout menopause.
How long does brain fog last in menopause?
Brain fog can last a long time when it comes to menopause. You may want to reach out for menopause tips for symptom like this, so you won’t be as frustrated when it happens to you. Oils provide menopause relief, in some cases, and may help you get through menopause easier.
Why am I so angry during menopause?
Like with many of the other symptoms related to menopause, anger arises because of the hormonal changes taking place in the body. Anger during menopause is common and many women experience this. You may also be angry because of the other changes taking place.
What can I take for menopause brain fog?
One common menopause issue is brain fog, which means you may have trouble thinking and staying focused. If this happens to you, you can be prescribed low doses of female hormones, which may be able to alleviate some menopause symptoms you are experiencing, including menopausal anger, hot flashes, and depression. It is also thought that certain essential oils provide menopause relief from certain symptoms.