Through history, women have shared their experiences and solutions to pass along information they couldn’t get anywhere else. It’s not all that different today. Almost half of doctors admit they aren’t up to date on ways to ease the uncomfortable aspects of menopause. But we can do something about that.
With a boost from the Internet, we honor the tradition of women learning through sharing; we are compiling a collection of menopause stories, updated every week. It’s a universal experience for women, but no two women go through menopause the same way. If you’d like to tell us about your menopause experience, please answer eight questions here and include a photo of yourself.
Our goal is to make menopause more mainstream, something we can talk about without whispering. Read about our menopause mission here.
Here we feature the story of Jeanne Chung of New York City, who has created her own supplements, sold at Mighty Menopause, to help ease women through menopause. Top photo by: Margot Duane.
When did you go into menopause?
48 with peri-menopause symptoms; now 51 and still in peri-menopause.
What did you know about menopause before you hit it?
All I knew was that it would eventually happen, that my periods would stop, and that is was the prevailing hallmark of being an old woman (or that you were then going to be an old woman). Other than that it was a bit mysterious and a bit worrisome. Most responses when mentioning the word were expressions close to a gasp!
What you wish you had known?
1) That most gynecologists don’t have any good info/support for peri-menopause and menopause. Most are OBs too and are focused on pregnancies and deliveries.
2) To pay closer attention to my cycles throughout the years.
3) It will take a village (and a ton of research) to figure out what’s going on and what to do about it.
Most vexing aspect of menopause?
HRT. And the mindset driving its usage. Until there is more thorough research on the use of HRT, I think plants are the way to go. Civilizations and cultures have been healing human maladies for eons using regional plants. There’s gotta be something to it, right? On that side of things, it’s so challenging to find information (intelligent, researched-based) to help understand root causes of symptoms and select natural, plant-based remedies to address them.
My super frustrating and shockingly poor experience with a gynecologist pushed me to find relief for my symptoms! It motivated me to want to modernize menopause. We deserve so much better. And it’s time.
How do/did you treat the uncomfortable parts of menopause?
For my peri-menopause symptoms, I used Chasteberry for a kinda weird PMS and Diindolylmethane (DIM). I also used both oral and topical progesterone for heavy bleeding. I once bled for 10 weeks straight!
Most memorable menopause story?
Since starting down this path (of starting a company and developing products), I have met so, so many women. The most impactful experience has been meeting all the women past menopause (in their later 60s, 70, 80s), all of whom were radiant and happy and all of whom basically said a variation of the same things:
Girlfriend, it’s fantastic over here.
I am so happy and content with my life.
I can barely even remember menopause.
You’ll be so fine.
Three words to describe your menopause experience?
Anxiety. Inspiring. Real.