What Not to Say to a Menopausal Woman

I wrote a humorous article for Hot Flash Daily that was inspired by a funny cartoon I saw. By the way, this great site has recently undergone some great updates, so if you haven’t visited for awhile, check it out.

Menopausal WomanAnyhow, in the cartoon, a husband is reading the paper and telling his wife: “If you feel like shouting, just close your eyes and count to ten.” The enraged (and rightly so!) woman is holding a frying pan directly over his head. The caption reads: Mood Swings Caused by Menopause Aren’t Helped by Suggestions.

Just goes to show that a mad menopausal woman deserves a gold star for each day she goes without physically injuring someone. Because it seems like someone is always giving us lame advice to help with our symptoms, right? So that got me to thinking.

What are five of the worst things you can tell a woman enduring menopausal madness?

Here’s what I came up with:

  1. You should think before you speak.” You should run for your life. NOW. Hello, lack of control over what I say comes with the territory and, in fact, is in my menopausal bill of rights. Why is it that the people who are always telling you to calm down, hold your tongue, and be rational are the ones that make you mad in the first place?
  2. If you just go to the bed at the same time each night you can beat insomnia.” Careful, because that little piece of advice makes me want to beat you like pancake batter. Don’t you think I’ve tried that a million times already? Ditto drinking warm milk, eating a banana, avoiding alcohol and large meals, and watching TV before bedtime. My insane insomnia is not caused by bad sleeping habits. I’m in hormonal hell, thank-you very much!
  3. Just concentrate.” That’s not my fault either. This continuous mental fog is caused by…well, I forget what causes it. Something to do with hormones. Anyways, IT’S NOT MY FAULT. That’s all I know.
  4. Wine triggers hot flashes, you know.” Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a d*** if wine causes hot flashes. When perimenopause hit, I found that I couldn’t function without my glasses – especially when they’re empty.  If there was ever an excuse to drink, menopause is it.
  5. You’re putting on a little weight; you may want to cut down on chocolate.” You mess with my chocolate and you better have a good look at your insurance policy. Didn’t I mention that I’m a certified menopausal chocolate crackhead? Look out! You’ve been warned.
  6. If you keep scratching, you’ll only itch more.” Really? You know that itchy rhymes with bitchy, right? You’re about to get a dose of the latter symptom if you don’t leave me alone.
  7. A good diet and a little exercise will make you feel better.” As Fred Allen said, “I like long walks, especially when they’re taken by people who annoy me.” Besides, I’m already in shape. Round is a shape. And haven’t you noticed that diet is ‘die’ with a ‘t’ at the end?

All right, I forgot that I promised to list five things and came up with seven. Didn’t you read Number 3? Shut up!

Image courtesy of stockimages at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.


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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