Back story:This is an expose, exposing my period of mismanaged menopause. I’m trying to push the pause button to fast-forward so i can be men-o-done with it.
I had a hysterectomy but retained my ovaries in my early forties so i never knew when i was done menstruating and in peri-menopause. I really didn’t give a crap what they called it, Peri-menopause, full-menopause or post menopause, they all had symptoms and hormone changes. I just wanted a fix to my mood swings, hot flashes, dryness, fatigue, low sex drive, anxiety, insomnia, headaches, joint pain, sinus allergies, weight gain; okay maybe all those weren’t from menopause but i still wanted them to be fixed.
I watched Oprah and she said to go on bio-identical hormones to solve all your problems and worries about breast cancer and heart disease. Sign me up. I found a wonderful Doctor in Dothan, Alabama who prescribed the lowest dose of estrogen in a pill. I was fixed for the time being.
Then we moved and the symptoms came back with a vengeance. I went from doctor to doctor and finally in 2014 i started taking a combination of Progesterone, Estradiol,Estriol, and Testosterone in bio-identical cream form. The directions read to apply two pumps, but being of low tolerance, and rebellious, i applied only one-ish. Three years and a few weeks later, just after my sixtieth birthday, my hormones left the building, otherwise know as my body.
In Jan of 2018, I went to a new ob/gyn where I explained to her that when I applied the cream it seemed to induce the hot flashes. I felt i needed an adjustment of sorts. She prescribed Relizen, an non-hormonal, herbal supplement. Before taking this, my research found that it is used for male prostate issues. Truthfully, I didn’t go to a doctor to obtain a non prescription, maybe, might work, solution that i could purchase myself on Amazon.
I went back to my general practitioner. She prescribed an anti-depressent (i wasn’t depressed, but getting there quickly). The plan was to go off the hormones completely, and take Effexor for my mood swings and hot flashes. This time my research found that this SNRI serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor has been known to relieve menopause symptoms. As much as i had an aversion to taking drugs, I tried it for two weeks. Again 1/2 the dose since I have a low tolerance to medication.
I cant imagine why any female would trade hot flashes and moodiness for NO BRAIN AND A NUMB CLITORIS….REALLY???? Give me my hot flashes back, and its my party, I’ll cry if i want to, dammit.
Back to my gyn i go…Stop everything and go on an Estradiol patch. OOOOOkay. Three weeks later, I have gained six pounds (a lot for my short frame), my boobs exploded into water balloons with nipples so sensitive, I couldn’t wear a bra. The hot flashes went away but now I had too much weight on my body that all my joints ached and i was depressed because none of my clothes fit anymore. Give me my hot flashes back.
All this time, i researched the web, read Dr. C Northrup’s book on the pleasures of menopause (my ass) and had interrogated my close female friends, locker room ladies, random cashiers and waitresses who look my age. That brings us to today. Read on to see what I am trying now….