It’s now been over one week since being told about my menopause but it feels like a lifetime! I have never felt so tired.

Today, I am mostly talking about support or more the lack of. It astounds me sometimes at the amount of lovely comments people have shared to me and the experiences that some of you have trusted me with too. Hearing that I am not alone in this means the world……but yet it is still such a lonely experience.

This menopause has made me feel so weak and tired, emotions that I am not used to as I am a very strong woman. But this is tough, I am finding this very hard at times and just want to feel ‘well’. I will never take advantage of just feeling ‘well’ again…..

Having any news in life that shakes your world a little can make you feel quite isolated and in need of a hug or two. When experiencing a bereavement, diagnosis or big change in life, all you want to do is surround yourselves with others that just ‘get it’. It can be extremely difficult and an emotional challenge, to face people whose opinions and compassion is different to yours. However, it is near impossible to avoid people who you could really do without seeing or spending your valuable time with. For example;

WORK- Dealing with difficult people at work is tough at the best of times. But if you have to work knowing you are dealing with emotional and physical strain, then this can feel near impossible at times. Sometimes all you want to do is either walk away or let rip at the individuals who feel it is acceptable, regardless of what you are going through, to cause trivial issues and offload baggage onto you. Obviously your role may be to lead staff and i appreciate that if you are not coping with work, then maybe time off is necessary. However, when you have to support yourself or have others depending on you, how can you afford the time off? Also, even though it may be your job to run a department or just work as a team, if you are going through difficulties it is only natural to expect some sort of understanding and sympathy from colleagues and management. Unfortunately, this is not the case in many work environments and it’s a real shame. Of course the problem could also be that you need a new job!

FAMILY – Family can either be the rock that you cling on to, too suffocating with support or nowhere to be found. When there is a crisis, for you, family are usually the first people that we tend to go to. But as mentioned above, if they just don’t ‘get it’ then what is the point.

“Well, you don’t look that upset”…. Just because I don’t look upset does not mean that I am fine.

“You are overreacting…” Eurgh

FRIENDS – Any conversation that starts with “what if” or “at least” usually does not come from an empathetic point of view. These people usually either do not know how to handle the situation or do not know you at all. For example when being told I was going through the menopause I was instantly filled with “what ifs” and “at least it’s…” when all I needed was sympathy! Some friends approached me and said “That’s really shit”, perfectly understandable answer.

“At least you aren’t going to die” Well, to be honest that did not cross my mind and that feedback is not really helpful right now.

WAVELENGTHS – All negativity aside, I do have lovely supportive people in my life. The flowers in the picture for this blog are from a friend who lives in Wales, yet she is still thinking of me as I go through a hard time. I am very lucky.

It is extremely rare to find people who are on your ‘wavelength’. These people, again, just ‘get it’. There’s no feeling like you have to explain yourself or your thoughts, because regardless of whether they’ve been through it they just ‘get it’. I had a conversation with a friend the other day about feeling ‘the odd one out’ and absolutely I can agree with that. When you feel that you think differently to others, it can be a very lonely time, causing unwanted isolation. You don’t want nor have asked to feel the way you do and you don’t want to be closed or referred to as being ‘moody’. But when no one is in your head or your heart, or happen to be going through what you are experiencing, how can anyone understand?…..

Please take time to listen to people, try and understand them, be kind and be patient. You never know what someone may be going through.

Steph x







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