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Body Image

Personal Stories of Menopause and Midlife

Women have a wide range of experiences during the menopause tradition. Here, in excerpts from Our Bodies, Ourselves: Menopause, seven women share their personal stories of menopause and midlife.

 Charlotte small  "I awoke one frigid, December night in a blistering sweat. Quite suddenly it seemed  like some internal register had jacked up the temperature in my pajama top.  I quickly removed the offending garment and lay there feeling an odd sense of elation.  I had arrived -- my first hot flash..."  (read more)
 Virginia -- thumbnail picture "While I was going through menopause, I was also going through a divorce. I was focused more on my children than myself. They were all teenagers at the time, or even younger, and it was a really tough time..."  (read more)
 Margaret -- thumbnail picture "In my youth there was scarcely a part of my body I could look at without critique. But over time I made peace with parts I had disliked for decades..."  (read more)
 Jane-- thumbnail picture "When I was fifty-five years old, I was stunned to learn that I was infected with HIV....  As a woman newly divorced in 1983, after 24 years of marriage, I had not been on the dating circuit for a quarter-century.  I never dreamed that a man I began seeing - he'd been a close friend my entire adult life -- would be HIV positive..."   (read more)
 Leonore -- thumbnail picture "When I sit in my sex therapist chair, I hear from women and men whose sexual concerns reflect their worries about money, their relationship problems, and other realities of their lives more than their biological conditions. For example, I recently met with a woman..."  (read more)
 Debra Walfield small "I used to be a closet eater. I figured if no one was looking, I didn't eat it. Although I hid it well, I was 30 pounds overweight. I used to stay up late at night reading and eating junk food like chips -- I craved the salt -- and chocolate..."  (read more)
 Yvonne small "There were times I thought, what is wrong with me?  I felt so confused. The day I put the iron in the fridge and the milk in the linen closet was the day I sat down and cried, thinking I must be losing my mind..."   (read more)
 Kensington ladies small "Menopause might have been breathing down our necks when we started meeting in 1976, but we had no interest in discussing it or anything from our "real" lives..."  (read more)

Excerpted from Our Bodies, Ourselves: Menopause, © 2006, Boston Women's Health Book Collective.

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Excerpt Pages:  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9 

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