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10 MENOPAUSAL MOMENTS OF THE LAST FOUR WEEKS …

… in the order in which they occurred to me

  1. My mother-in-law – unhappy for decades, grey, sluggish, overweight and generally of the opinion that being a woman “simply sucks” – tells me once again, over the course of an everyday conversation about who-knows-what, that I should have my uterus removed. Apparently, it worked wonders for her. “Come on, just do it!”
  2. I have a new boss who is about five years older than me and suddenly I feel too old. In addition, there is this diffuse fear for my job. Complete nonsense, I’m sure! Right?!
  3. At 8:30 p.m. I find a bristly, 1.5 cm long hair on my chin, which wasn’t there at 6 p.m.
  4. During my precautionary breast palpation I also discover three long, dark hairs. I am glad, for a change, that I’m currently rather not having sex.
  5. At COS the changing rooms are closed due to the Covid pandemic. I try to find the most secluded corner of the store and quickly try on a T-shirt. Meanwhile, a 30-something man appears and, despite my warning signal, is suddenly confronted with me in a bra. I can’t stop apologizing to him.
  6. I develop an unimagined aggression towards women (WOMEN! What’s wrong with you?!), who describe cookies, cakes and pasta as a sin, a small sin, otherwise a sin or something you “make an exception for”, “treat yourself to” or “have a weakness for” in magazine articles or on social media. In the past I didn’t care.
  7. Other people’s age is suddenly as important to me, as it was when I was five.
  8. Marie Kondo is so right: a clean closet doesn’t only spark joy, it’s also incredibly practical. I make a big effort and finally throw out all the clothes that no longer fit and/or look good on me. Afterwards my closet is empty. So, I put everything back to where it was.
  9. The female version of a midlife crisis doesn’t manifest itself in me suddenly chasing young interns, but in self-optimization. Although it’s only June, I’ve already gone through three different life-altering nutrition and lifestyle changes this year. I don’t drink alcohol at the moment. Nevertheless, I wake up every morning with a hangover. My alarm beeps at 6:30am and for a few seconds I could swear I just stumbled out of a club.
  10. I’m looking at old photos. One is of my grandma: a woman with a perm and a “house dress”, in the background on the sideboard I can make out a cyclamen and a Heino LP.  On her arm she has me as a baby. Suddenly I get to thinking and I realize that I am now exactly the same age as my grandma in the photo. After that I somehow don’t enjoy photos anymore.

photo: Micheile Henderson found on Unsplash

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