60 voices: “Menopause? I’m still hot”

Heat and overwhelming emotions: BRIGITTE.de reader Doris Benz reports how she still made friends with the menopause.

Some phases of life creep up. Puberty, for example. The daughter buys gray kohl, pink lip gloss and puts the urgent need for a bra in the room, although nothing can be seen with the naked eye that would justify this request. As a mother you know: Aha, now the nice Bibi Blocksberg will soon be replaced by the not-so-youth-free Miley Cyrus, who likes to swing naked on a swinging ball. Expect a single wrong word on a Saturday morning to ruin the whole weekend.

At some point you don’t take the rolled eyes and snotty answers too much to heart, especially because you are distracted by the blood-red lipstick and the artistic eye make-up, which is reminiscent of a lovely raccoon. I slipped through puberty with my daughter quite relaxed because I can remember my own unadorned. Even today I could give at least thirteen reasons off the top of my head why I wasn’t able to be home at the appointed time and how meanly my friends made me drink alcohol, even though I never, really never wanted to.

Nobody prepares you for menopause

But menopause, ladies, is a chapter that you are not really prepared for. Your own mother is not of much help either, because unfortunately your mother was just going through the menopause at the time you went through puberty and you honestly have better things to do than take care of your mother’s ailments .

Part one: the hot flash. She comes with a bang! Bang! Felt one to two liters of water break through all the pores of the body and the face takes on the dressy color of a tomato sauce à la Napoli. The feeling about it is so uncomfortable, as if you had been caught by ten police officers with a suitcase full of drugs and had also discovered that you had nothing on, except flip-flops.

I didn’t want to admit it. Menopause? Now? Nope! So I have taken measures in case of emergency. Always powder and deodorant with you, as well as a small compartment in all handbags. The hot flash, the old bitch, never comes when you wait freezing at the tram stop in winter, but when you are in top style, surrounded by people at a vernissage and just want to make brilliant comments on the pictures on display. Which then doesn’t work quite so confidently while the makeup flows over your cheeks.

Byebye, spaghetti straps!

We come to part two of the approaching climacteric: The little daughter is almost grown up and is setting out to conquer new worlds. Let’s say Australia. You stand at the airport and wave the child after you with a brave smile. When you find the car in the parking garage a quarter of an hour later, you get the strange feeling that something is wrong with your upper arms. As if they were still shaking.

And yes they do! I’m quite sure that the Queen is only waving her hand so funny because she doesn’t feel like lying in the royal bed with wobbling upper arms after a long, waving day at work. That means saying goodbye to the brisk summer dress with spaghetti straps. In all honesty, spaghetti wearers only look really good on girls under the age of 25 with a slim figure and breasts on the spot. With bra straps and a summery blush on your shoulders, you are often reminded of a delicious roll of ham on the net. So look for dumbbells from the basement so it doesn’t get worse.

Part three is called unpredictable outbursts of emotions. Some have already got to know this during pregnancy. A cute baby on TV or a cute little dog and the tears are flowing. At an advanced age, you burst into tears when, in the television commercial, the student hands your mother a pack of chocolate from the gas station for Mother’s Day, even if you suspect that he has the dirty clothes with him to wash in his backpack.

The good news: Menopause is an excuse for anything

So, now the good news: menopausal symptoms can be used as an excuse for any occasion. The other day I was at a party with a friend. A boring man hogs us up with his even more boring stories. While I am trying to politely sneak away, my friend suddenly fans her face frantically and says, “I’m getting a hot flash. I need to get some fresh air right away.” Grab me by the arm, whisper “Sorry” in the direction of Boring and drag me onto the balcony. Brilliant! I try it in the family circle.

Doris Benz studied German and worked most of the time as a copywriter. For a few years now she has turned her love of art into a profession and works in a gallery.

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Tiring discussion about how to organize the weekend. Me: “Just leave me alone. I’m not feeling well at all. I have menopausal symptoms, I don’t even know if I can do anything at all.” Result: meaningful changes of gaze, embarrassed silence and calm for me.

Note: Young women have a lot of respect for this topic, they fully understand and think: “I hope it catches me very, very late.” Older women cast conspiratorial and amused looks and men of all ages don’t know what to do with it, try to pretend understanding and unobtrusively get themselves out of the line of fire.

I think of it this way: I drink a tea from the health food store for menopausal symptoms every day and imagine it helps. I go jogging three times a week and then do half-hearted exercises for the wobbly stomach and arms. I ignore my wrinkles and accept the flushes. My motto is on a birthday greeting card: “I’m still hot. But now more in waves.” Then I wave to you all warmly, but of course majestically only with my little hand.


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