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"It's time." or "The beginning of the end!?"





Peri-Menopause (1). The time when all the fun stuff ends and all the pain, sorrow, and ugliness and sweat paves its way to the surface. The time when women lose their beauty, their worth to the wonderful creatures called men and humanity in general(according to society, movies and advertising, and yes, also some medical experts). 


Society whispers to us (females) that after (30, 40) 50 years of age life is going to end. Or at least suck as a sweaty, unsensual, sexless piece of shit. So better buckle up. Don't expect anything nice. It will all just go down from here. 


What? I don't believe it. I dare to doubt it. Even though a nasty little voice inside myself sometimes whispers exactly these words into my ear. But no. Shut up. Talking to me like that, I might even make it (one of) my mission(s) to prove you wrong. So wrong. There must be another truth. Who's afraid of perimenopause


No, I am not there yet. Even though my age might suggest it. No signs of perimenopause so far (or do I just deny it?? can one? But females around me seem to start getting symptoms (and they say: You'll know!). Maybe this time I want to be ahead of my own development - feeling that puberty and young adulthood with all the excitement, trouble, hormones, unwanted fertility, contraceptives, misunderstood periods, most gorgeous sex etc. could have been better prepared. And because I lack wise older females in my life, I will from now on feed on your experience my friends (if you are willing to share), and on books, videos, and other smart, more advanced women. 


And yes, there are plenty of sources. (I secretly already researched! And like about sex, I started talking about it with - nearly - everyone.) It still feels strange, that I need to get to a science level on peri-menopause to have a chance of being ok. That's what it feels like at least right now. What hormone, what body function, what so ever...


Since my education as a sex therapist - where a young female medical doctor was telling us how ugly, grey, dry, paper-thin (and sad) everything gets - I wanted to get on top of things. Fear and rebellion as a motivator. For researching things that don't affect me (yet) I need a strong motivation. There I got one. Or two. 


I started researching, but very often I stopped after a little while because all I read just made me feel more like a woman in peri/menopause is just doomed. The texts and videos were more fearmongering than I could stand. So, no wonder many people don't educate themselves or feel ashamed experiencing (totally natural) symptoms of peri/menopause.


For a long time - like with Endometrioses - I did not meet anyone (knowingly) who went through or is in menopause. How is that possible? Maybe because we do not talk about it. Are we ok with shame being put on us when not (anymore) being fairy-like creatures, smiling along and being able to procreate? Internalized sexism or ageism is real. 


During my search, I found a lot of people and pages which "help you to stay slim" and "calm" to not become a nuisance to anyone. This made me angry. Would that not mean buying into the patriarchal and capitalist view on females? Isn't that just stupid shit that benefits no one? I would say so. 


So, I have to say I am not an expert on this topic, yet. I have not "read it all" or experienced it myself. But I will from now on start to post more about what I learn about peri/menopause.


!!! Would you actually be interested in an online meet-up to exchange experiences? !!! (please message me: siri@sirisundin.com)


Recently, I talked to a friend who is experiencing her first symptoms (hot flushes) and she said that she feels uncomfortable at work because of them and that she would rather like to stay at home. Knowing that some companies - thanks to the cool millennials and genZs - are creating spaces and facilities for menstruating women, I started wondering why corporates are not already having places to accomodate female needs during a very potent time of their careers. I heard that some women quit working because of the symptoms of perimenopause. And not just because they feel tired more often. Is it so difficult to have showers, a room to rest when needed, places to store clothes? And understanding that it makes no sense to work while tired and dizzy. Wouldn't it make more sense to work when in great energy? And yes, I know what current managers would fear. It is a little bit like "people who are not supervised all day do not work at all". A myth which keeps polluting the workspaces even though studies show the exact opposite. I believe that it would benefit companies financially to take care of this. 


(I just heard someone in Sweden telling me that some Swedish employees started talking about a peri/menopause friendly work environment. If you know who that is: Please let me know!!)


But here are some drops of what I already found out:


A great place of human exchange and knowledge is Shirley Weir's page: https://www.menopausechicks.com and her fantastic Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/MenopauseChicks


Right now I am reading "perimenopause power" by Maisie Hill who for examples states that risk factors for hot flushes are:

  • surgical menopause

  • obesity

  • smoking

  • childhood neglect or abuse

  • prior depression and anxiety

  • history of taking the pill


Interesting, right? Does seem like our behavior, the way we live DOES have an impact. Studies which show that in other parts of the world hot flushes are more seldom suggest the same. So, I make this my first cornerstone of happy perimenopause. 


The next one is the idea of a spiritual trauma therapist I once met. She believes that the more you have dealt with your (childhood) trauma, the more you have grown into the mature feminine the fewer problems you will face during menopause. She sees hot flushes as a reminder for that there is a burning question which needs to be answered. And the moodswings? I praise every woman who steps into her anger and uses it in a creative self-regulated way. Not shying away from it. Not shying away from her power. Bam. Just saying.


I will soon post more about wonderful sources and insights on this not any more so scary topic. 


Till then, stay wonderful.

Siri


(1)Perimenopause means "around menopause" and refers to the time during which your body makes the natural transition to menopause, marking the end of the reproductive years. Perimenopause is also called the menopausal transition.

Women start perimenopause at different ages. You may notice signs of progression toward menopause, such as menstrual irregularity, sometime in your 40s. But some women notice changes as early as their mid-30s.

The level of estrogen — the main female hormone — in your body rises and falls unevenly during perimenopause. Your menstrual cycles may lengthen or shorten, and you may begin having menstrual cycles in which your ovaries don't release an egg (ovulate).

Once you've gone through 12 consecutive months without a menstrual period, you've officially reached menopause, and the perimenopause period is over. (Source: www.mayoclinic.org)

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