Scottish journalist Kirsty Wark has made a documentary which tries to bring the conversation about menopause into the mainstream. Made for The BBC, The Menopause and Me speaks about how Wark went through a medical menopause at the age of 47. After doing a hysterectomy, she didn’t want to do more hormone replacement therapy because of the risk of breast cancer.
This is the first holistic documentary on menopause which includes testimonies, science and discussions about all symptoms of menopause.
"Suddenly, I had no oestrogen and the disturbed sleep and night sweats started. By the time I started making the documentary, nothing much had changed for me in 12 years and I just coped with it, as so many others do,” she says.
She says that she had nobody to talk to about what she was going through.
Wark talks about how menopause hits women at the prime of their lives, and women live a third of their lives after menopause.
She says that menopause is often discussed in hush tones. “It’s not so long ago that the hormonal changes that came with menopause were regarded as madness – the madwomen in the attic," she says.
Wark talks about the lack of understanding about the symptoms of menopause, and how people suffer in different ways. Low mood is a key indicator and most GPs give women anti-depressants when there are other ways to treat them, like behavioural therapy.
“The key thing is to talk to one another," she says.
Some of the symptoms of menopause include joint pain, depression, insomnia, hot flashes, weight gain, osteoporosis, hair loss, and vaginal atrophy. These symptoms differ and what one woman experiences maybe different from what another one does.
Also Read: Why Exercise Is Important During Menopause
Picture Credit: Alchetron