Eastern and Western experiences of menopause, are very different. Women from indigenous cultures entering menopause gain more power and status as wise women or leaders and the Japanese term 'Konenki' means renewal or energy. Symptoms also vary with the 'hot flush' prevalent in western countries, 'low vision' in India and 'shoulder pain' in Japan
As a western woman, the most prominent description I found to describe menopause was mid-life-crisis. Hardly a positive connection! Aging and menopause have negative associations in western culture. Not surprising perhaps considering the historical background. Religious doctrine in medieval times, claimed that the inferiority of women, and the pain of childbearing, was caused by the sins of Eve. Older women past menstruation posed a safety concern (due to excess wastes) as they may unwittingly poison men, children or other women.
Now that's all a little extreme, but where does it leave us today? The pressure is on; a plethora of magazine, film and television products promote beauty and identity as status, perfect and youthful. Where though, I ask myself, are the fifty-something models, they seem to be in short supply?
My point is that middle age or menopause, if women develop a sense of identity or self worth based outside factors, such as those described they may also be subjugated by them. In a country of free speech such as Australia, women have that choice.
"Since love grows within you, so beauty grows. For love is the beauty of the soul."