Thank You, Let’s Talk
A few days ago I took a deep breath and published a post on my Instagram account about my upcoming hysterectomy. I wanted to write a blog to say thank you to everyone that has got in touch to offer their best wishes and share their experience. Want a wonderfully supportive community Instagram can be, it really did do my heart good.
I was struck by the number of comments and direct messages from ladies who expressed their surprise, in a positive way, that I’d chosen to post about it. It certainly seems to be a subject that us lot don’t seem to talk about and as a sex we are usually good at communicating? Why is that?
I have noticed as I’ve got older that I do feel regret for not embracing my youth more than I did, particularly since I’ve been Instagramming and having my picture taken all the time. Although I’m sure that’s an entirely normal feeling (after all we know youth is wasted on the young🤔) I do think ageing for women can be pretty damned hard. It’s not that I envy my girls’ young looks per se, I love looking at them and seeing their beautiful faces and silly young ways but it‘s also a stark reminder that I ain’t no spring chicken anymore! Divorce, illness, losing parents, parenting teenage children! All things that many of us go through at some point in our mid-ish lives. But I wonder if we put others before ourselves to such an extent that we tend to push aside our symptoms, and feelings for that matter, in the hope that the changes we experience are only to be expected and don’t need to be discussed. Or worse, shouldn’t be discussed.
Obviously there’s cultural and generational stuff going on here. A bit of old “we’re British we don’t talk about that” stiff upper lip. Me and my mum have an open relationship but menopause is something we never, ever talked about until now, and apparently she doesn’t really remember much about her own. She was on HRT though and says that it helped. My mums generation and her mums generation weren’t nearly as open as we are, not by a long chalk. But maybe there’s still progress to be made!
Another reason, maybe, is MEN (not all, especially not you Si of course😂). Yep, it’s time for a bit of man-bashing😉👊 A lot just don’t want to know. Their wives and partners are going though “the change”, not that that makes them old as well!!! Woe betide their mates might think they’re not having sex?! FFS let’s NOT talk about this they cry!!! End of😂
And so to the realisation of not being able to bear children. For some, most cruelly, menopause comes too early and in those circumstances it’s easy to understand why this could cause someone a great deal of anguish. I’m lucky enough to have two gorgeous girls aged fourteen and sixteen - I love them to bits, to the moon and back - but seeing as I’m being brutally honest here, maternal I am not. The mere thought of having another child at forty seven absolutely horrifies me!! But still, women in exactly the same position as I do still feel the loss even if they planned never to become pregnant again. The finality of it is absolute and these can be intensely personal feelings I should think.
Back to some of your remarks and DMs to me regarding all this, I’m left with the feeling that we all could benefit from talking about our experiences and indeed anxieties around the subject. Or at least feel that we can if we want to, without fear or judgment or negativity of any sort. We are ALL going to go through the menopause and be faced with decisions around HRT and all the rest of it at some point, whether it be naturally or medically enforced. Us women need to communicate, stick together, share our strength, hope and experience not just for our own wellbeing but for the benefit of others!
The support I’ve received so far has been amazing. You live this life once, let’s not make it harder than it already is, let’s talk about this. When I’m out of the hospital I plan to write a post surgery Blog. But if you have any symptoms at all, go to your doctor and have a chat, and don’t leave it at that😃😘xxx
Thank you all.