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Embracing the Invisible: Unveiling the Real Numbers of Women Feeling Insignificant in Midlife

9th March 2024
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In the grand narrative of life, midlife often stands as a pivotal chapter where the storyline takes unexpected twists and turns. It’s a phase where responsibilities multiply, priorities shift, and societal expectations loom large. Yet, amidst this whirlwind of change, there’s a silent struggle that many women face – the feeling of shrinking into insignificance.

As a life coach for women, I’ve had countless conversations with women in their 40s, 50s and beyond who share a common sentiment: they feel like their voices aren’t heard, their achievements aren’t recognised, and their dreams are fading into the background. It’s a poignant reality that’s often overshadowed by societal stereotypes and unrealistic expectations.

But let’s peel back the layers and delve into the real numbers behind this phenomenon. According to recent studies, a staggering percentage of women experience a sense of invisibility in midlife. Surveys reveal that so many women aged 40 and above feel undervalued and overlooked in various aspects of their lives – be it in their careers, relationships, or personal pursuits.

What’s even more concerning is that this feeling of insignificance isn’t just a passing phase; it can have profound effects on women’s mental and emotional well-being. Research indicates that prolonged feelings of invisibility can lead to heightened levels of stress, anxiety, and even depression. It’s a silent epidemic that deserves our attention and empathy.

So, why do so many women feel like they’re fading into the background as they reach midlife? The reasons are as diverse as the women themselves. For some, it’s the pressure to conform to societal standards of beauty and success, which often favour youth over experience. For others, it’s the lack of representation and recognition in male-dominated industries or patriarchal social structures.

Allow me to share a personal anecdote that sheds light on this phenomenon. Recently, I ventured into a bustling beauty department with my three daughters – aged 16, 23, and 28. I love make up and make up trends, I always have, and keep up with new products. But as we went from counter to counter, I couldn’t shake off the unsettling feeling of being invisible. Despite being surrounded by vibrant displays and eager salespeople, it was as if there was a void-like space where I stood – a space devoid of acknowledgment or recognition. While my daughters were showered with attention and recommendations, I felt like a mere spectator in my own existence. I have no need to be pandered to, but it was as if, I genuinely didn’t exist.

In that particular arena it mattered not as I was happy for the girls to chatter happily and I was content to just be a spectator, but it did make me think about other areas of life in which women might feel like they are not seen, never mind heard.

However, please let me assure you, that there is a very real glimmer of hope – the power of self-awareness and self-empowerment! As women, we have the ability to rewrite our narratives and redefine our worth. It begins with acknowledging our strengths, embracing our uniqueness, and reclaiming our voices.

As a life coach, I’ve witnessed firsthand the transformative impact of self-discovery and self-acceptance. By cultivating a deep sense of self-worth and resilience, women can break free from the shackles of invisibility and step into their full potential. It’s a journey that requires courage, vulnerability, and unwavering self-belief – but the rewards are immeasurable.

So, to all the women who feel like they’re fading into the background in midlife, I say this: you are not alone, and your story matters. You are capable, valuable, and deserving of recognition. Embrace the beauty of your journey, celebrate your achievements – both big and small – and never underestimate the power of your presence.

In closing, let’s not just acknowledge the real numbers of women feeling insignificant in midlife – let’s ignite a movement of empowerment and visibility. Together, we can shatter stereotypes, challenge societal norms, and create a world where every woman feels seen, heard, and valued. It’s time to embrace the invisible and shine brightly for all the world to see.


If you would like to work on being ‘seen’ and finding your voice, your inner self, and the beautiful journey to self worth and resilience, the very best place to start if my Feed Your Fairy Programme. You can find out more about it here and join too if you’re read to get started:




Photo by Priscilla Du Preez 🇨🇦 on Unsplash