Medicalised Menopause – what is the real effect on women and their lives?

by Kate Greenaway, Physiotherapist, Goonellabah

In my younger years I saw my mother going through a phase of anxiety, agitation and unrest and eventually she started taking hormone replacement therapy. Hearing the doctors around me (I had a lot of doctors in my family) give their medical opinion as to what was occurring didn’t really support me to understand what was going on and what was actually happening to her.

What was happening to her?

It was simply menopause. But the way it was discussed was as if it was an ill health condition that needed to be managed medically, rather than something normal and natural that can actually be a very beautiful process in a woman’s life. 

There are many instances when medical intervention can be necessary during menopause and this is not a criticism of medicine, or anyone that needs medical support during menopause. Nor is it a criticism of doctors – I work closely with many medical practitioners for the greatest support of our mutual clients.

The problem is that menopause, is often by default viewed as ‘an issue’ for women, in both medicine and the general population. It is often seen as something that has to be braced for, something women have to ‘get through’.

Discussing this topic with a group of women recently, I realised the extent of the harm that is done to both women and men when we are fed and swallow lies about this time in a woman’s life. Continue reading “Medicalised Menopause – what is the real effect on women and their lives?”

How hardness can play out in a woman’s body and affect her health

by Anon, UK

I have come to realise over the past few years the hardness I carry in my body as a protection; I would say I learnt this as a little girl when my tenderness, light, and delicateness was abused, not in a sexual way, but simply the reflection of the world, my home, the education system telling me it wasn’t safe or okay to show this and live like this. I grew up learning to harden and be tough, to do everything by myself; showing I don’t need any support as a way to get through the world. This is the complete opposite of everything I now feel and know myself to be.

By no means have I let all my hardness and protection go; I still carry hardness and protection, not like I used to, but I can still feel it, in my face, my jaw, my body, when I open my eyes to go out into the world I harden, when I anticipate feeling things I don’t want to feel, like the state other people are in and how they feel about me. But the thing is this hardness doesn’t protect me, it makes me ill.

For one it makes me exhausted, my muscles tight and tense, my jaw sore. It keeps people at bay, as I don’t let them in fully, which means I don’t let all their love in and I don’t let all my love out. It stops me from feeling everything I feel, and I know now that is what will truly support me, letting myself just feel all that I feel. Continue reading “How hardness can play out in a woman’s body and affect her health”