If you’re a mom in her 40s and have a daughter in her early teens and in puberty, you may have noticed some similarities between what you and her are experiencing at the same time.
The similarities are because both of you are going through a change in the hormonal environment in your bodies, especially fluctuating amounts of estrogen and progesterone.
For your daughter, the fluctuating amount of these hormones leads to the beginning of puberty and initiates menstrual periods.
For you, the fluctuating amount of these hormones is going in the other direction. Your ovaries are becoming less and less responsive to signals from the brain to produce estrogen and progesterone. The ovaries are becoming less active over time. For this reason, these years of change are called perimenopause — the years just before menopause when the ovaries stop releasing eggs.
Even though your reproductive systems are moving in different directions and there are obvious changes in how your bodies are responding, there is a change you might share that is similar. For some daughters and mothers, they’ll notice a change in emotions. This certainly varies a lot from one person to the next, so it’s not a good idea to label everyone. But you may have noticed a change in your daughter’s emotions and she may have noticed a change in yours.
Here is a chart I put together to highlight the similarities. Moms are on the right in the chart.
It’s good if a mom and daughter can be open with each other and become partners during this time. Perimenopause and puberty are life-changing times, and if you can help each other through them, life will be better for everyone.