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The M word, a sociological study of menopause

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  1. Introduction
  2. Women's life expectancy at the turn of the century
  3. Male Menopause
  4. The medical communities assessment
  5. Serials like Desperate Housewives and Sex and the City
  6. Conclusion
  7. Bibliography

There is a shroud of secrecy that surrounds menopause, that for so many women and especially their mothers, it is rarely spoken of beyond hushed tones. In the animal kingdom for Bonobos, it doesn't even exist; females keep procreating all their natural lives! For women of all cultures it is a rite of passage as it connects to the aging process, though in the western world it is not as celebrated as it is in other parts of the world. Much like the girl who goes through her first Menses there is hormonal flux, it marks the beginning of her journey in the reproductive phase. It seems for many women, menopause is a turning point that connects to the aging process, and the ending of a cycle in ones life. It can bring about many symptoms that aren't just the physiological affects that come from drops Estrogen levels, but may also represent a sense of loss. This paper will examine why this is, and other societal views that influence this perception.

[...] It would also seem that the depression that might accompany this time is not the result of a drop in estrogen, but rather the psychological affects that coincide with the change of life, a sense of loss, an ending. How society views aging, differs for men and women. A man in his forties and fifties becomes more attractive, or so seems to be the consensus. Generally as a rule for women there is this perceived decline. Through television shows like, Desperate Housewives, all the 40-something women portrayed are attractive sexual beings. [...]

[...] And for a woman in the throws of Menopause it may also represent an ending for them. The cyclical patterns that follow the course of a woman's life, also follow an evoluntiary path as well, It coincides with a biological occurrence written into are DNA. But societal views may direct impact the woman's experience, as does her own personal evolution. When some experts in the field of women's health speak as the it comes across as though they were speaking to all women, or it can sound like the Walt Disney version that just doesn't exist. [...]

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