2010 Volume 15 Issue 2 Pages 237-247
The objective of this research was to clarify the mental and physical changes experienced by perimenopausal women and their coping methods. This research was used a qualitative research design. Interviews were conducted with a convenience sampling of 7 perimenopausal or postmenopausal women who had either experienced, or were currently experiencing, perimenopausal mental and physical changes in order to discern the transitions experienced by the women during perimenopause and the ways they handled them. The interview analyzed by content analysis and 10 categories of mental and physical changes were extracted. These included menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes, trouble sleeping, and mood swings, as well as confusion and feelings of loneliness. 12 categories of coping methods were extracted, such as paying attention to one's mental and physical state, striving to live based on current physical strength and ability, and adapting to changes. The women also regarded an overall sense of balance as important. They valued their relationships with others, and rediscovered and revised their sense of self. Moreover, they sought not only to relieve symptoms, but also to face life with enthusiasm and purposefulness. Perimenopausal women experience broad changes and implement a variety of ways to cope with this time of transition.