Menopause – Navigating Through The Maze and The Haze 

Approximately 4.4 million women, aged 50-64 , are currently in employment in the UK and the reality of menopause will have been experienced.

Recent surveys have shown that 10% of women who worked during the menopause have resigned due to symptoms and 66% reported menopausal symptoms have had a mostly negative impact on them at work. Sadly only 12% of  females surveyed requested workplace adjustments, for fear of the potential reactions and consequences. 

Menopause, once a very” hush hush” subject, may now finally come out of the shadows in the UK as it is supported by the Equality Act 2010. 

If menopause symptoms have a long term and significant impact on women’s abilities to carry out their roles, it may be considered a disability and under the Equality Act 2010. An employer is therefore legally obliged to make reasonable adjustments for female employees going through menopause and cannot discriminate against them. 

Educating and training managers about the menopause is now needed to prevent discrimination and create a more inclusive work environment. It simply makes good business sense to offer flexible working arrangements and access to support to improve productivity and retention rates. New polices may be required in the workplace as well as a review of existing policies to create a supportive and inclusive culture.

Education should be for both men and women in the workplace, so at least they can appreciate this significant transition which every female will have to undergo at some point in their life  – and of course dispel any myths around the subject. 

The body chemistry change of the menopause is a normal part of life and like any major milestone it will pass. Women need to hear that there is life at the other side, of what seems a daunting task, hidden by myths and family legends . Women can settle into a new norm after this very empowering phase of their lives if supported through it. 

It doesn’t have to be the nightmare many imagine it to be if right treatment plan and approach is taken.

 There is a way out of the maze even when in a haze.