When a lady’s first message to you reads…
“I am perimenopausal and really struggling with symptoms. Things got very bad about a year ago and although I started HRT last year, it’s still having a massive impact on my daily life. Things have gotten worse again recently and I wondered if you might be able to help? It’s as much a mental challenge as a physical one and I just haven’t been able to find any help to deal with it”
I don’t wait to reply.
Within my reply I advise I cannot provide any medical advice, but I am able to provide support, knowledge and practical advice and we arrange for her to attend my next zoom presentation for individuals and we will follow with a 1:1 if required thereafter.
For the purpose of this blog I am going to call this lady Jenny.
All attendees were leaving my zoom presentation for individuals, but Jenny was the last one trying to log off – zoom was also new to her tonight! I wanted to try and catch her at the end and see how she found it; so this worked perfectly.
So I asked…”did my presentation help?”
Jenny couldn’t speak…she was so emotional. She had managed to hold it in during the presentation, but it was coming out now. I waited, reassured and honestly told her this was a reaction that I was used to and to take her time.
Once she was able to, Jenny managed to say that she wanted to share within the group discussion during the presentation, but she knew she wouldn’t be able to, as she was so emotional just listening to my story.
Jenny had hit rock bottom.
Attending my presentation made Jenny suddenly feel like she wasn’t on her own. I explained to her that many women feel completely isolated and lonely during this time and that she really wasn’t on her own now.
Jenny’s fear was that her debilitating physical symptoms were going to stop her from working and as a self employed and single individual, this in itself was very stressful.
Jenny advised that she had attended various appointments with different GP’s and even paid privately to see a gynecologist, but still didn’t feel she was receiving the right medication for her symptoms.
She said she had taken on board my comment about having to ‘fight your own corner’ to ensure you had the right medication and support in place.
We talked some more and then arranged a 1:1 two weeks later.
As soon as Jenny started speaking during our 1:1 I knew I was speaking to a different woman. Already, I could see she had taken control of her situation and decided to ‘fight her own corner.’
Jenny had been back in touch with her GP who had changed her medication and arranged for future blood tests.
Jenny had started to feel slightly brighter on the new medication and by the way she spoke, I could tell she was starting to see more clearly.
I gave Jenny space to talk and be listened to, with no interruptions – who else gives you this time and gets it?
At the end of the hour I concluded that Jenny had the medical side of her menopause under control and she knew what path she was now on and was going to follow it. However, I could see that there was now a need to address the personal side of her menopause – Jenny the person.
I asked whether she had confided in friends about how she was feeling…understandably the tears returned. Jenny had only confided in one friend, but she knew that if I challenged her to reach out to other friends it would help.
We talked about what she did to relax and Jenny agreed to start putting more time for herself in place to help her gain some headspace and calm time.
Jenny described our connection as a “relief” and within her feedback asked me why my details are not in every GP’s surgery in the district, as she did not know who to reach out to for support and understanding.
Jenny is now very passionate about providing her own friends and contacts with the information I provide within my presentations and we are going to arrange a group presentation to help educate and support others.
Jenny has given me permission to write this overview of our connection in the hope it will help others feel able to reach out.
Jenny is an amazing lady who was connected to me by a friend of a friend and I am just grateful the connection was made.
I have met too many women with similar stories to Jenny who have hit rock bottom before seeking help.
It is my passion to reach them, support them and ensure they don’t feel isolated or alone.