The momentum around menopause started taking shape a few years ago when its impact on working women became more mainstream.
According to the Faculty of Occupational Medicine in the UK, menopausal women are the fastest-growing demographic in the workforce with approximately 8 out of 10 menopausal women engaging in work.
Even with these figures, barriers for women exist, resulting in many leaving their positions due to the negative effects of menopause and the lack of support.
This is why interventions are needed for women who are both neurodiverse and menopausal. Workplaces need to champion pro-neurodiverse workplaces with a special emphasis on those suffering from menopausal symptoms.
From medications and cognitive behavioural therapy to proper diagnosis and exercise, today, there are several strategies to help cope with autism, ADHD, and other forms of neurodiversity. Even though all these interventions exist, there’s still a troubling lack of specialised support for neurodivergent women who are going through menopause.
While the research that’s available on this topic is limited, the more we encourage research and studies to be conducted on this experience, the more strategies we can implement to empower a woman’s unique journey with neurodiversity and menopause.
Until then, here are some strategies you can use to address this unique issue in your workplace:
Irrespective of how much progress we’ve made in the last few years, there’s still a stigma that follows women with menopause that can create a hostile workplace. This can be further exacerbated for neurodiverse women. Creating a culture that champions awareness and open conversations can help women share these experiences.
Unless you are a professional in the area of dispensing expert support and advice, it’s important to leave this to a professional who has a better understanding of neurodiversity and menopause. Giving access to resources and professionals who can help working women cope with their conditions is a great way to offer support.
One of the most difficult steps that neurodiverse women with menopause can take is discussing their challenges with someone else. Once a dialogue has been established, confidentiality must be maintained at all times and if there’s a need to share the information, obtaining their consent to do so is of paramount importance.
Similar to neurodivergent employees facing challenges due to their surroundings that are designed for neurotypicals, working women going through menopause also have certain challenges they face at work every day. Create supportive workplaces that address these issues and incorporate reasonable adjustments wherever possible.
Neurodiverse individuals often face many challenges even though they bring an assortment of talents to the workplace. Our blog—Workplace neurodiversity challenges faced by neurodiverse talent—explores what neurodiversity looks like in the modern workplace and the common problems that neurodiverse employees face at work.
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