Friday, October 13, 2006

Menopause

I am in menopause.

I am at my beginning. Again, I have come of age.

We all do it. We all do it differently – hormone replacement therapy; hot flashes; loss of sex drive; increased sex drive; the tragedy of new facial hair; fear of bone loss; antidepressants – and none of us know what will come next. Very few of us share our secrets. I have spent the last few years discussing these issues with girlfriends. We have shocked and surprised each other as well as found comfort in some of our common stories.

After years of being single and keeping my eyes on nothing but my career, it was clearly time to take control of myself and my body. I had just gone through a record emotional dry spell. I felt very alone, but imagined that I was not in a place so different than other women. Women in the workplace spend years losing themselves in order to gain advancement that, even if it does come, won’t be as satisfying as they thought. It is that time in your late thirties, often through your forties, that men take second place to career and either don’t notice you or assume that you must be a lesbian because you haven’t noticed them. It is the time that women gain reputations in the workplace for being a bitch.

Don’t get me wrong, we can be bitches during this time. However, it is really that we are misunderstood. In spite of the fact that our bodies and minds are going through a change no man can ever comprehend, we remain relatively level-headed and make incredibly sound decisions. We simply will not do it with the same compassionate and loving smile we had in our twenties. We can no longer tolerate the expectation that we will relinquish credit for a job well done.

Every woman should know that the dry spell is over when you release yourself and allow yourself to say the M word. With or without the big job; with or without a loving partner in your life; with or without personal wealth, it happens – menopause.

6 comments:

Ms. Karen said...

Oh gawd, the facial hair. I look like I'm harboring a small animal under my chins. I try to look on the bright side by telling myself I'll never freeze to death with all this fur I seem to be growing, but I'm so tired of it.

Tired of plucking, waxing, shaving, ignoring, and staring at my beard.

And, according to my doctor, I'm not yet in menopause, or even perimenopause. Pray tell, if it isn't that, then just who is responsible for these damn hotflashes and chin hairs???

M said...

O the joys of aging.... Perhaps it is part of some master plan that wrinkles and a beard would be sexy in old age.

diana said...

Ahh yes, don't we just love having little whiskers on our face? It's oh so attractive. In all honesty, I've taken measures to rid them completely and it's working. I've recently started using skincare for unwanted facial hair due to peri-menopause and menopause that contains chapparal extract, (a hair inhibiting ingredient). It's really wonderful.

Rhea said...

I haven't had too many signs of it yet, but I am encouraged by all the women who are going before me. Thanks!

Boatwoman said...

What a joy to find a blog on the menopause. I am now going through it and deep joy NOT. I have not gone onto any HRT yet, going to suck it and see. The lack of sex drive is getting to me though arghhhhhhhhh.
Nice blog thank you for being here.

M said...

Boatwoman - I'm so glad you found me. I've still not gone to HRT... made it through the crying and the hotflashes. Work on that sex drive.... I found it stopped the flashing ;-)