I have written about my 30+ year battle with crippling depression before. However, what I was unaware of was the devastating impact my being hyper sensitive to perfectly normal hormonal changes was having on my life and, just as importantly, on my family.
I was completely oblivious to the connection even though for two weeks every month, I was entirely consumed by emotions that I could not even understand let alone regulate.
The hurts and beliefs I still carried from childhood, were being continuously reinforced, because I looked for them all the time. However, at the vulnerable part of my cycle, they were magnified beyond all proportion and I was out of control.
So, my situation was already precarious when the menopause began its reign of terror in 2015 when, I found myself having a full-blown panic attack in a department store in Alicante.
Eventually, I began experiencing physical symptoms and started visiting my doctor’s surgery in 2016, when I was told that I was not menopausal as a blood test had been returned as normal. Nevertheless, I continued to visit the surgery regularly, often mentioning that I thought my symptoms were cyclical – but I was never taken seriously, indeed my concerns were routinely dismissed.
The symptoms continued to wreak havoc each month and by July 2018, a series of life events had me feeling pretty suicidal and I had given up hope of ever finding a cure for whatever it was that was hurting me and mine.
My rock bottom came when, my husband of 28 years, gave me tablets to kill me. He wanted to put me out of my misery. I then spent a whole year languishing at rock bottom, literally surviving from minute to minute as I had no coping skills, or ways to identify my emotions, let alone manage them.
By July 2019, I didn’t want to live with this pain any longer. I believed I had tried everything, every form of therapy (even qualifying in some of them), many different antidepressants and nothing had worked. So, feeling that helplessness, I found myself on a station platform, on a beautiful sunny afternoon. I was calmly waiting for the next train to throw myself under. The train was cancelled and I collapse to ground believing that I could not even do that right.
Days later I went in desperate search of tablets that I had been diligently stashing away, determined this was the day and someone had moved them. Hours later, I was on a local motorway bridge being held onto by a stranger. He refused to let me go.
Eventually, my friend came to visit me all the way from Essex and she made an almost instant connection with the menopause. I explained that I had been asking the doctors if there was a hormonal link because I thought there was, but they all said there wasn’t. Sadly, I have since learned that my experience is very common.
My friend arranged for me to see a private doctor, specialising in the menopause and within 72 hours of starting HRT, I suddenly felt a small but clear shift in my wellbeing and, I was no longer experiencing the urges to kill myself. That was 29th July 2019 and my recovery from the depths of despair was swift and to me, miraculous.
I discovered Rapid Transformation Therapy and by the beginning of October 2019, I was on a train heading to London to train, personally with Marisa Peer, voted Britain’s best therapist. RTT made me see that it was not a reflection on me that my husband did what he did, that act reflected his own lack of awareness and therefore, that understanding set me free from the shame and allowed me to begin to heal.
Now, I help women who carry unhealed wounds that are exacerbated three-fold by the menopause to heal. In addition, I feel empowered to start a menopause support group in my area to reach out to other women at this time in their lives who are feeling desperate but don’t quite understand why. According to the Office of National Statistics, in 2018 the highest rates of death by suicide for women was in those aged between 45 – 49 just the age of peri-menopause, coincidence? I think not, the struggle is real.