Menopause: The Overlooked (Yet Significant) Life Stage

Despite the importance of integrating a lifespan / developmental lens into our work with clients, menopause is not covered in any mental health training. The transition of menopause is profound. The impact of hormones on women's mental health is significant (and we need more research and training in this area). It is particularly impactful during the menopausal years given that the fluctuating hormones have a systemic impact - physical, cognitive and psychological. 

Topics:

  • Why is this Important?
  • Pre-Peri, Peri, Menopause & Post-menopause
  • Signs and Symptoms
  • Treatment Options
  • The Role of the Psychologist
  • Mental Health During the Menopausal Years
  • Neuroscience - Vulnerability & Opportunity

Goals and Learning Outcomes

For participants to leave with a basic knowledge of the stages of menopause, the symptoms of menopause, the mental health risks in menopause and the differences in mental health presentation during this life stage.

1: Describe the stages of the menopausal transition
2: Recognise signs, symptoms and treatment options
3: Describe the common mental health challenges during menopause

Register Now

Details

12pm 30th September AEST
90 minutes live webinar
$77AUD
Includes 90-day access to the recording

Kristin Blouse

Kirstin Blouse
Clinical & Forensic Psychologist

Menopause and Mental Health

Midlife women are at greatest risk (above any other age range of women) of depression and suicide. It is thought that this is not 'just because' midlife is the most stressful stage of a woman's life (research shows this to be the case - due to the many demands upon her) but also because of the ongoing yet equally unpredictable fluctuations in her hormones and the sequelae that follows. Most practitioners have no idea that the aetiology, experience and expression of menopausal depression differ from MDD at other (non-hormonally significant) stages of a woman's life. 

Further to that, although they may not meet diagnostic criteria, a large percentage of women report symptoms consistent with challenges with mood and anxiety that have a significant impact upon them - and for some time. First-time occurrence of mental health issues is common during these years. The recurrence of prior mental health issues (depression, anxiety, trauma) is high.

Finally, the qualitative research available and the narrative accounts offered to authors who have written extensively about women’s experiences of the menopausal years, reveal consistent themes that women ‘wrestle with’. These themes are psychological in nature and include; identity, ideologies, autonomy, self-acceptance (Self and one’s changed body) and marked by a significant drive for autonomy and self-fulfilment.

Without understanding general information about the menopausal transition, let alone the psychological impacts, mental health practitioners are not fully equipped to formulate and treat women in their late 30's plus. The lack of knowledge about this life stage and all that comes with it, at times may contribute to misdiagnosis and/or limited treatment success.

About Kirstin Blouse

Kirstin Bouse is a Clinical and Forensic Psychologist with nearly 3 decades of experience. Spanning Family Court, Child Protection and private practice, Kirstin has extensive experience in forensic assessments within Family Court and Child Protection, and working with trauma (all trauma), pregnancy, motherhood and the transition through menopause. She has a particular interest in the intersection of perimenopause and ADHD.

The Founder of Perth Psychology Collective some 18 years ago and also provides supervision. Earlier this year, Kirstin launched a new business. This was prompted by her own perimenopause journey 7-years ago during which she was also diagnosed with burnout and as an ADHDer and burnout. The challenges she experienced in finding informed health practitioners to support her with all 3, sowed the seed which has now become All About Her - The Centre for Menopause.

Page Last Updated: 03 July 2024

}