On February 16, at the Women’s Fund Armenia, we hosted the colleagues implementing initiatives within the framework of the program for women over 40. During the meeting, a number of issues were discussed, which we try to constantly refer to in our daily activities. The meeting was actually much more cordial and informal, but we would like to present some generalizations in the points below:
- Women over 40 are invisible, their problems do not concern the public, sometimes or often it seems as if they no longer exist.
- No one talks about the health of women over 40: women, especially in Armenia, generally care less about their health, but it becomes even more difficult to value yourself at this age. There is no expectation from women that they should take care of themselves and be able to monitor their health.
- Women over 40 have a need and desire to talk, communicate and create safe spaces for each other. It is difficult to find people who share the same problems, who will be open to talk about their problems, and it is even more difficult to find a circle of safe people, with whom discussions will not lead to repeated accusations and unpleasant feelings.
- Women over 40 are accused of looking “older” or “younger”, not having enough “looks.” Women in general are blamed for almost everything they do or what happens to them, but in this case age is added to the list of accusations.
- Taboos about the personal and sexual life of women over 40 are increasing even more. We all talk about the fact that the Armenian society is becoming more liberal, but this does not apply to healthy sex education and sexual and reproductive rights. And with age, the public in general gets surprised when they see a woman who resumes life, loves life and appreciates herself.
- The sexual and reproductive health of women over 40 is another important direction, which, unfortunately, is again ignored under the veil of Armenianness, genuineness and empty propriety. Conversations about menopause are becoming more taboo, and our desire to talk about them is increasing.
- Women over 40 feel more self-confident, because they are more experienced both in terms of life experience and professional aspects. In most cases, the forms of address “Morkօօr” (aunt )and “Tatik” (grandmother) no longer bother them, because women try not to pay attention to the connotations associated with it. Some women like to pass this wisdom on to others.
These and other thoughts are circulated and discussed during our interesting meetings. The list can be added and continued endlessly.