Women are so much luckier than men because they have PMT and then the menopause. If each period is dreaded by the woman – and by her family – this can be the most wonderful spur to sort it out properly. And the same with the menopause. For most of us, it is only when we feel really terrible that we do something about it. Usually in this country, female hormonal problems are covered up by taking mare hormones as the pill in various guises or HRT. I could blather on about the small difference in size between the human and the horse. But I won’t. Personally, I don’t think we should really take horse hormones. But that is my opinion, and I’m used to being out of step.
The menopause can be not much fun. Hot flushes, mood swings – weepiness, bad tempers, lack of self confidence – memory loss, lack of concentration,vaginal dryness, lack of sex drive, piddling urgency, low energy levels. A long list – longer than this. I remember when mine started. I thought I had early senile dementia! Standing in Waitrose frantically thinking, ‘Up!’ whilst desperate to wee. At first the hot flushes weren’t too bad – I just got hot. Rather nice on a cold day. Then, as time went on, I got sweaty too and that was never fun. Plus, my God, did I feel OLD when I was flushing. Horrible.
And so I managed to get on top of the symptoms and things got much better. So the menopause is a gift because if the symptoms are sorted out without using horse hormones, but by, essentially, making ourselves much healthier, life becomes fantastic. Feeling awful during the menopause (or pre-monthly period) spurs some of us to grasp the problems properly, so when it is all over we are in a much better state than when it all started.
Another problem with horse hormones is that at some time, we have to stop taking them. And then that prop that helped us through has gone – and we are now much older without being any healthier. So the choice becomes accept those wrinkles or pay – for botox, with its stretched, shiny, immovable skin; for a face lift (hope the surgeon knows his stuff), but do remember to cover up the neck; for the trout pout. For some superficial will do. It won’t do for me, and it won’t do for my clients.