Menopause Misery: Cry Me a River

Okay, my menopausal madams. Time for a little menopause humor. Because it’s either laugh or cry. And let’s face it. We do way too much crying, right? In fact, when I’m not busy being irritable, irrational, and ill-tempered, I’m enjoying my brand new hobby, thanks to menopause: filling up buckets with tears.

CryingMind you, I was never the super-sensitive emotional type. I was going through life blissfully pragmatic and practical about life’s events.

Even those sentimental, tear-jerker chick flicks would leave me dry-eyed in a theater full of weepy women. I was kind of proud of that.

So what’s happened? Now, it’s instant drama, at any random moment, for no reason whatsoever.

Some days, I can watch a soppy Hallmark commercial or even those tragic ASPCA of starving children commercials without a tear in sight. Other days, that Amazon Prime commercial about the little horse being ignored by all the big horses with a happy ending due to the purchase of a very large doggy door causes me to burst into tears.

Some days, I can listen to the saddest country song unmoved and other days the cheery song, “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” sends me over the edge and sprinting for the nearest Kleenex box. Just because I happen to feel worried and happy that day and life is SO not fair.

In fact, nowhere is this whole “cry at the drop of a hat” trait more infuriating than while I’m working. I’m a firm believer in the die-before-you-cry-at-work philosophy. So how could my unreliable tear ducts turn on me at a critical moment during an editorial meeting?

I was simply explaining the logistics of my article in a very Spock- or Sheldon Cooper-like way when suddenly tears filled my eyes and my chin began to quiver. Out of nowhere. Dabbing tears, I explained it was just my allergies while my editor looked supportive but a bit confused and doubtful.

And don’t tell me crying is good for me. Shut up! I hate crying. It makes my eyes red, puffy, and swollen. My face looks like a battle zone and crying gives me an Excedrin headache. By the way, I’m not one of those women whose tears delicately make twinkling paths down their cheeks. Oh no, when I cry it’s a watershed moment complete with snot running down my nose, blotchy skin, and unattractive bunched up facial features. Picture deafening, gasping sobs that make me sound like I’m choking on a chicken bone and you get the picture.

Today, well, it’s a roll of the dice. Maybe I’ll blissfully and happily work on my blog this afternoon in total control of my emotions. Or maybe I’ll become convinced everyone hates me because no one favorit-ed my Tweet five minutes after I posted it. You just never know. That’s the kicker. One moment to the next, I’m not sure if I’m going to feel calm and joyful, flip out, or simply sit in the corner and cry like a baby.

So what’s a menopausal woman do? Keep waterproof mascara and Kleenex packs on hand at all times. As I said before, it’s either laugh or cry. Whenever possible, choose laughter.

For more of my articles on menopause along with plenty of great advice and interesting articles on the big M-word, check out Hot Flash Daily.

Image courtesy of holohololand at


Julie A. Gorges is the author of two young adult novels, Just Call Me Goody Two Shoes and Time to Cast Away and co-author of Residential Steel Design and Construction published by McGraw Hill. In addition, hundreds of her articles and short stories have been published in national and regional magazines, and she received three journalism awards from the Washington Newspaper Publishers Association while working as a newspaper reporter. Julie currently lives in southern California with her husband, Scott, and has two grown children and three grandchildren.

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2 Responses

  1. Cat Michaels says:

    Julie, your tears had me laughing WITH you. It is a blessing feeling life so fully as you do. Mr. Spock and Sheldon Cooper miss out on too much! They should take lessons from you.

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