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J Women Aging. 1999;11(4):57-73.

How women experience menopause: the importance of social context.

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University of Texas, Austin 78712-1088, USA.


This study analyzes personal accounts of women's menopausal experiences to understand why most women view menopause as an insignificant event, despite negative cultural and medical constructions of menopause as a time of "loss." We analyze 16 in-depth interviews with a diverse sample of women to examine how social contexts affect women's experiences with menopause and the meaning of those experiences. We find that most women view menopause as inconsequential because other events of midlife are more important or stressful to them. However, when cultural and medical contexts are examined, we find that some women do not avoid others' negative constructions of menopause as a time of "loss."

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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