Galentine’s day celebrating female friendship is on 13th February. It started off in a 2010 episode of an American series called Parks and Recreation (never heard of it either). Where the female character decided to celebrate her female friendships by having a long and boozy lunch with her closest female friends. But what has started out as fiction, has now turned into a real life ‘thing’. And now, Galentine’s Day has become associated with the celebrating of female friendships, feminism, and the broader celebration of women.
Our friendships, especially our female friends have always been important in our lives. But increasingly they are now playing a much bigger part in our society. Friendships more and more are helping to define how people make sense of themselves in the world. From the first time we meet, through the growth into adulthood our friendships are there. With possible relocation’s for work or house moves, our friends help to give us stability and meaning to our lives.
In my work educating and healing menopausal women, the most surprising things I come across is the reluctance we have to talk to our friends about our menopause experience. And in a work situation, we hide ourselves away hoping that no one notices that we are suffering.
Why Our Friendships Are Important During Menopause
When women come together, it is magical. There is an energy that exudes from each and every woman, that is an unspoken support and once we do start talking, we quickly find common ground. It is really important we feel supported. If our family and our work colleagues don’t understand what’s going on, then our friends can be a really important lifeline for us during the menopause.
The menopause can have a significant impact on how you feel and act around others, including your friends. And while friendships can often become difficult during menopause, they can also be very rewarding and supportive
Try and get your friends to understand that you’re having a bit of a tough time and that all you want is their support, and maybe a little bit of help just to get you through a particularly difficult time.
Don’t Take Things Personally
If a friend suddenly starts making excuses about spending time with you, don’t take it personally. Social anxiety can become a reality to even the most outgoing of party people. It can get to the point where home is safe, and the mere thought of going out, socialising in a group or going to a busy restaurant can become pretty overwhelming.
Just keep reaching out to let your friends know you are still there. If it’s you that has the anxiety, think about other ways you could possibly get together in smaller groups, in quieter places.
Look for New Friendship Groups
Going through the menopause can be challenging, especially if many of your friends are of a different age to you. Think about looking online for menopause support groups where you can discuss your symptoms. Join some new clubs or classes near you so you’ll increase your network of friends face to face. And possibly you may also learn a new skill in the process.
True Friends Will Be There For You
When faced with a crisis you will discover who your true friends are. These are the people whom you feel comfortable enough to call at the last minute to help you out when you need practical and/or emotional support.
Finally – Female Friendships Are Powerful
You know that cathartic feeling you get when you have an intimate talk with someone about something that has been bothering you? Often what you really need is simply someone to listen. Someone who would be free from judgement.That’s what strong female friendships will do for you.
Bonding and sharing with other women during menopause can have an almost therapeutic effect. It’s a connection that forms a community of like-minded women, all dealing with the symptoms of menopause in one form or another. They walk the journey with you. And those connections can reap positive benefits.
For the most part, this bonding comes naturally to us. We’re nurturers by nature and, for many women, it’s intuitive to reach out and help others. When we extend that caring towards our sisters-in-menopause, we become open to not only receiving but to sharing as well.
Will you be getting involved with Galentine’s day celebrating female friendship?
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