Dear Women Over 40,
This is about Mary, a friend of mine who is 61 years old and suffering terribly with menopause. If you see yourself or someone you know with similar symptoms, seek help from your healthcare provider.
Mary cries an awful lot these days. She doesn't know the reason. Her body often feels like spontaneous combustion going on inside. Mary snaps at others during periods of over-reaction to minor incidents. At times she becomes so enraged she appears frightening to others around her.
These episodes last a short time, but Mary is quite embarrassed when it's over and often apologizes for her behavior and outbursts.
Mary feels as if she's “going crazy" and has no control of herself.
She describes how she's tried every deodorant on the market and none of them last a full day. She struggles with feminine odor, bathes twice a day out of necessity. She often wears cotton tee shirts to absorb her body perspiration.
At work, Mary has a small desk fan she uses to maintain comfort and avoid perspiration. However, she may be the only one with a fan when the temperature is not excessively warm.
Oftentimes, Mary is in a meeting or in conversation with someone face to face and Mary's face is dripping sweat. This is so embarrassing for her.
Mary is mentally, physically and emotionally challenged everyday. Why? Hormones.
There is a joke, I repeat a joke, about menopausal women: “I am out of estrogen and I have a gun". It simply means that at some point, our female hormone levels such as estrogen are extremely low, which cause a multitude of bizarre signs and symptoms. Mary's hair became so thin she was forced to wear wigs, which of course caused more warmth and perspiration.
Mary gained about 40 pounds with no change in her diet. She began to have unexplained episodes of dizziness which her doctor could not diagnose as all tests were negative.
One day Mary summoned the courage to seek counseling with a psychiatrist. He did not address her menopause, only her mental and emotional symptoms. He performed a psychological and IQ test to rule out dementia for example and arrive at a proper diagnosis. Mary was experiencing signs of clinical depression, aggravated by menopause.
She was prescribed two medications and scheduled to return in 2 weeks. Mary was animated, cheerful, clear thinking, improved memory and generally felt so much better after only 2 weeks. She asked the doctor if this was possible and he said yes.
Mary continues to have hot flashes and other menopause symptoms but she is not bothered by them, and she does not over-react to negative situations. The outrage, angry feelings and emotional roller-coaster has been greatly diminished. Thank God, she says.
Ladies, please visit my website for more on women over 40 issues.
Marlene Griffin R. N.
I've been a registered nurse for 30 years and nearing retirement. However, I would like to continue helping my “patients" by way of my website. My focus is primarily on women over age 40 issues, but I receive emails from women younger and that's fine.
Please send your comments, suggestions, questions and remarks to me and I will try my very best to respond within a few days. I like to read your email very carefully and try to put myself in your position to understand your concerns, before responding.
I am genuinely a “people person" with a big heart; very empathetic and sympathetic, intuitive and caring.
Medical issues are difficult to handle online sometimes. I cannot be certain I've made things more clear for the reader or more muddy. This is the reason I need your feedback, negative and positive. I do hope you find my website helpful. Thank you for allowing me to serve you.