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Where Emma wonders at the menopause
Menopause? Wait, how did that happen?
I mean to say, I get how it happens: inverse puberty. What I have experienced is my body making a mad dash to take on things early. Young Onset Parkinson’s, Menopause, DISH (a form of arthritis which occurs mostly in those over 80’s). I’m 45.
I suspect my body is in the wrong timeline and I’m secretly a 90-year-old wizard from 1132AD who swoops over the world on the back of a dragon.
But in lieu of dragons, we shall talk menopause.
You see, I reckon every woman is still 25 inside her head or maybe 30. But after that, we get so busy pretending to be grownups that we miss the next 20ish years somehow. No wonder we lose our shit when we wake up one day and find we are raisin-wrinkled, terminally exhausted and possess an uncontrollable urge to nuke everyone in our path.
But it’s not the menopause I’m really pissed about, it’s the world’s take on it:
Firstly, the depictions of women (especially in cartoons) as grey, slipper clad and festooned with curlers. Nora Batty anyone?
Secondly, always we are losing control of our emotions and thus are obsolete. Hysteria is never applied to the male.
Thirdly, no one gives a shit. Ask any doctor, scientist or politician.
Finally, every female celebrity cashing in by having ‘difficult’ conversations about menopause. Like it’s child fucking poverty or world peace.
There’s nothing wrong with old women in curlers and slippers and hell, I love grey hair but it’s not reality. Menopausal women aren’t that old. In fact, the ‘old’ are generally the ones who have emerged out the other side bouncing and not giving two hoots what anyone thinks.
Female emotion. Emotion is still very gender assigned and when we step outside the narrative for example; the volcanic rage that menopausal hormones can provoke in women, then we fall foul of the stereotype. Women aren’t supposed (or allowed) to get angry. Just as men are pilloried for displays of emotion that veto status, power and control.
The challenge is when battling mental health you are often unable to assert your needs and rights at a time when those rights are most vulnerable. As a result, we remain unheard, unsupported and judged. And that leads me to…
No one gives a shit. Period. Women’s health barely registers on the agenda and especially once we stop producing children-boys.
And the celebrity thing? Don’t get me wrong I think it’s great women with huge support networks, time and bank balances talk publically about menopause. I just don’t believe most of us can relate to their solutions.
This brings me to share my solutions:
Not Giving a Fuck
Diamonds and/or Sequins* (optional but very much recommended…who has a bad day when wearing a tiara?)
Menopause and Parkinson’s are a wild ride together, setting each other off in opposing directions. I received my Parky diagnosis when I was going through perimenopause. The neurologist had zero interest in my concerns about menopause making it extra challenging. I do wonder if some of my symptoms will ease as I travel through the next few years. Research will probably find a connection between dopamine and menopause. 🤷🏼♀️
Have a good one & cheers
P.S. I really need some more friends who love to
drink wine, swear discuss the Oxford authorship argument. Take pity and forward to your friends or arch-nemesis.
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