Menopause just like so much else in our modern life has been pathologized and women have been made to be at war with their own bodies because of this. Reframing what our bodies go through quite naturally can not only be liberating but transformative.
Menopausal stuff is becoming more and more an issue in the mix of my coming out of the psychiatric drug withdrawal. I’m 48 years old, but this stuff can start happening to women even in their 30s. A whole lot of women affected with psych drug withdrawal issues are also dealing with menopausal (and peri-menopausal) issues. It’s a very common theme on the withdrawal boards. People try hormones to mitigate the phenomena and sometimes feel comfortable on them but more often those of us with sensitized nervous systems don’t do well adding any sort of hormones, included bio-identical ones.
I really liked the below article on how to consider menopause…in short…it’s NATURAL…and it can be a healing time of growth and transformation. Medications and additional hormones are not generally recommended. I was not at all surprised when I googled “menopause spirituality” that I found a whole lot of wonderful information. I have been noticing that hot flashes usher in information from the psyche/universe for me to learn from and process.
Let me be clear: magical in the title should not be thought to be synonymous with easy. It can be very challenging to honestly be with our body/mind/spirits. What I find though is that sticking with it is rewarding.
In the below article they speak of hot flashes being surges of kundalini energy. There is an article on kundalini and how it applies to psych drug withdrawal syndrome on this blog as well. Anyway, to learn from these energy surges we need to be receptive and non-resisting and we need to pay attention to them. Our society tells us to do the opposite and do whatever we can to MAKE THEM STOP. To be clear those of us who are dealing with psychiatric drug withdrawal syndromes, hot flashes and the associated bodily sensations can be frightening and feel like just one more thing we’d rather not deal with. What is going on in our bodies is already overwhelming. This may seem to simply add to it. That said, I’ve found that learning to pay attention to and embrace what is proves to be the best way for me.
I found the below article very helpful and I’ve gone ahead and purchased Susun Weed’s book: New Menopausal Years : The Wise Woman Way, Alternative Approaches for Women 30-90 (Wise Woman Ways)
Lora: Can you elaboborate on your view that menopause is a natural process and a spiritual journey?
Susun: I’d like to begin by sharing with you the work of Kristen Hawkes. She’s a researcher at the University of Utah who’s spent a great deal of time studying the Hazda Tribe.
Among the Hazda, the most productive, healthiest, and wisest members of the tribe are women in their sixties, seventies, and eighties, and Dr. Hawkes believes that menopause is the reason. She believes that after women have completed their childbearing years, they are positioned at the height of their intellectual and physical powers, available to give themselves wholly back to the community. So menopause is a process of enlightenment for the individual woman.
Most importantly, most altering, is the understanding that menopause is healthy…
Lora: The idea that menopause is unhealthy seems to be one of the big misconceptions we have about it. What are some others?
Susun: One of the biggest misconceptions is that menopause basically has to do with fewer hormones. In fact, the opposite is true.
The levels of hormones in a woman’s blood are never higher than when she is in menopause! The levels of some hormones actually are elevated up to sixty times their pre-menopausal levels.
Most of the symptoms related to menopause have to do with hormonal overload!
Then why, you might ask, does taking estrogen stop these symptoms? It’s because estrogen suppresses the production of the other hormones. However, it also prevents the woman from actually going through menopause.
Another great misconception is that in the past, women did not live long enough to go through this change, and that is why we need medical help to do this now. That simply isn’t true. (read more)