The menopause is just one more time in a woman’s life when hormones can make things difficult.
We experience hormonal fluctuations at various points in our journey. During puberty, they can cause unfamiliar urges, skin problems and make us irritable. But then, generally, of course, we only have to concentrate on our own lives with, hopefully, tolerant parents and empathetic friends.
Then along comes pregnancy and motherhood – wow, this hormonal deluge can be very emotional, causing the ‘baby blues’ among other disruptions. On the bright side, we have our newborn and many of us are lucky enough to have the help of a partner, family or friends who are understanding and supportive.
I’m not saying any of these times are easy but, having got the T-shirt, I’d say that the menopause, or more correctly, the perimenopause (the years leading up to the cessation of the monthly cycle) is probably our biggest challenge. Why? Well to start with, we have no idea when it’s going to start or how long it’s going to last. We can only guess at what symptoms may besiege us:
- Hot flushes/ night sweats
- Confusion/ memory loss
- Skin problems
- Weight problems
But I feel it’s what’s going on around us that makes it so much harder to cope with –
- Children leaving home
- Elderly parents in need of help or care
- A husband looking at retirement – and maybe not in a good way!
- Our own working and social life
Sometimes it can be hard to establish which of our emotional and physical problems are coming from us or from external pressures.
A good example of this is struggling with memory. It may not be that we keep forgetting but that we have so much to think about. And with all of this going on, it’s hard to find the time to concentrate on our own troubles and research our options.
So Little Time To Think About Ourselves
As a practicing aromatherapist and flower essences practitioner, I have found this is a common dilemma among many of my clients of ‘a certain age’. They are working (quite often full-time), they are worried about a child at university and they are now facing the challenge of a parent no longer in the best of health – plus they are still doing 90 per cent of the household chores!
I was presented with just this scenario by one lady looking for help from flower essences, as she didn’t want to go down the prescribed pill route if she could help it. Her mind was so busy, she was struggling to get a good night’s sleep, she was unfocused during the day which made her job harder and she was making more mistakes. She couldn’t remember important events and dates, which used to be automatic for her.
She booked a consultation, which was her first positive step in that she acknowledged she needed some time for herself. We spent a long while talking about her symptoms and how this was making her feel as well as talking about her general lifestyle. It was good for her to talk about it and for someone to listen in a safe, confidential environment.
Through my knowledge and the ancient practice of dowsing, we established that the following combination would help:
- White Chestnut – for her unresolved, circling thoughts
- Hornbean – she was feeling weary and didn’t think she could carry on
- Star of Bethlehem – she had experienced the loss of a sibling several years ago for whom she hadn’t grieved properly
All the essences came from the Bach range and we also made a sleep spray with essential oils to help her relax.
The outcome? She felt better about herself almost immediately. Over the following week, her concentration improved and consequently, her work. She looked at finding some hobbies for herself without feeling guilty, and joined a choir – something she had meant to do for the past 20 years!
She continued to have regular treatments, and with various combinations of flower essences to support her, she felt more in control of her life and able to help those around her.
From my own experience and the experiences of my clients, there is no doubt in my mind that the correct combination of essential oils and flower essences can support us physically, emotionally and mentally during menopause – and , indeed, all the hormonal ups and downs of a woman’s life!
Christine Martin ITEC DIP NVQ TATh BFVEA
Aromatherapist, Flower Essence Practitioner, Massage Therapist, Hopi Ear Candles.