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Saturday, 3 July 2021

The M word

I'm just being silly. No hushed voices here. Menopause needs to be talked about, loudly, frequently and often. In mixed company. Otherwise more girls who grow up to be an old lady who apparently knows NOTHING about what's normal for the biologically female body. I fortunately joined a facebook group and am learning a lot. There is so much that is normal that people just don't talk about. Or didn't.

I think when we teach our daughters about periods, we should be teaching them also about menopause, because it is all the same thing. Currently we teach puberty akin to people that focus on the wedding day and not the marriage. Puberty and menopause are the same journey, just at different ends of the voyage. I am finding it ridiculous that as an educated adult how much information I didn't know.

Emotionally I'm okay with it all. No negative feelings but the physical stuff is alarming until you understand what it is.

However, it's not all bad news and that's the bit we really need to talk about!

I just finished listening to on Audible, The Menopause Manifesto by Dr Jennifer Gunter. It's a great book and 13 hours of detailed medical information covering symptoms, medicine, herbal remedies, diet, sleep, stigma, emotions and a gazillion other things. She also includes history and how the patriarchy has affected how women feel about menopause, and the importance of grandmothers on the world. Even though a lot of it didn't apply to me (yet), I found it really interesting and engaging.

However, there are two important points that no one ever talks about and I feel everyone should know - men and women. My two takeaways*. after 13 hours of detailed information are this: Women going through menopause should get more oral sex as that solves a lot of problems (note get, not give) and they should also masturbate more in general as that might help a lot of wellbeing and physical issues too (not necessarily related to sex).

There you go, Doctor's orders!

*I might owe Dr Gunter an apology, that after all her in depth information and well researched historical analysis, I have focused on two throwaway lines in the book. If you feel that isn't the sort of information you need to know, don't dismiss the book. It has something for everyone and is in no way frivolous or dismissive in arguments or ideas. It has great advice on how to frame the experience in a different lens too.


PS. If you haven't seen this film, it's great. I went with my friend and her mum, and her mum was the first person to tell me that you could have hot flushes for TEN years! You can go through Menopause for a full decade! By the way, I am aware I use Menopause incorrectly - another side effect of my lack of education on this matter. My understanding now is if you are experiencing symptoms, then you are in Peri-Menopause. If you are finished, you are in Menopause (you have reached menopause?). Though feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.



Linking with #FortheloveofBlog<
Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday
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18 comments:

  1. So glad women are free to dialogue about this crazy transitional time of life.

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    1. I really feel like an idiot. I can't believe what I don't know! You get cold flushes not hot flushes too. I was unaware of this but I'm, pretty sure what I get! That's NEVER talked about. I kept thinking I was sick but not feeling sick. Ha!

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  2. So much more awareness and understanding is needed. Especially being half the population will experience it. Sadly It is reflective of attitudes towards women's health in general. Thanks for linking up to #fortheloveofblog

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    1. She talks about the history of that in the book (the attitudes that have shaped women's health - view thru the patriachy of course....)

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  3. It is good you are being open about it and it might help others x #fortheloveofblog

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  4. Definitely good to be open about these things. I'm getting to the stage of needing to be a bit more aware of symptoms of peri-menopause and it's made me realise how little I know and how little these things are talked about. I think I need to check out that book. #fortheloveofblog

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    1. I know! I'm a grown-ass woman who had three kids and I am discovering I apparently know very little about what is normal or even common with what happens to the female body when oestrogen leaves...

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  6. Wonderful. So necessary to teach our daughters about all the things their bodies are capable of. And our sons too. #KCACOLS
    (This is www.growingexceptional.com)

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  7. Heading into the menopause straight off several rounds of ivf and I have no idea what’s normal any more! Thanks for talking about it. X #kcacols x

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  8. This definitely needs talking about more - I'm all over the place at the moment! #kcacols

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  9. I've got all this to come & I can't say I'm looking forward to it! Thanks so much for linking up with #fortheloveofblog - hope to see you again next week!

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  10. I have been hearing about the m word a lot more recently, and whilst I am only in my 30s is certainly doesn't hurt to understand more about the female body and what will inevitably happen. #KCACOLS

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  11. Menopause should absolutely be talked about more frequently. It isn't taboo, it's female biology and it can be a harrowing process made worse by feeling alone. I recently watched a great programme with Davin McCall that explored menopause and it was eye opening- but it shouldn't have been- I'm a woman, I should know what's going to happen to me!

    Katrina x
    #KCACOLS

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    1. You've hit the nail on my flabbergastion (or whatever the word is.) I'm a woman. How can I not know this already???

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    2. Will track down the programme you mention

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