In this NSFM* ladies-only episode, Martha's friend returns to talk about midlife issues that are top of mind.
This shorter episode contains just one side of the conversation about flooding periods during perimenopause, IUDs and IUD removal, and how progesterone is often the first HRT intervention suggested and the first "needed" (by those who choose to go that route)
What are some doctors using to manage perimenopause symptoms?
Why is being drunk in love dangerous when middle-age is bearing down on you?
Get the answers to these questions in this episode.
* Are you one of my male listeners? This episode is marked NSFM (NOT suitable for men) due to menstruation stories you DEFINITELY don’t want to hear. 😂 Instead, please listen skip to the Viagra episode for some all-gender commiseration and laughs. It's a “sexier” less-likely-to-traumatize-you episode. You’re welcome!
And get your own deck of Martha's inappropriate affirmation cards.
MAV Tip: There are many ways to navigate the hormonal roller coaster of perimenopause, from diet, exercise, and other lifestyle habits to hormonal interventions, natural and pharmaceutical. If you need birth control in your forties, maybe a hormonal IUD could be right for you. Vasectomies, of course, are also useful. :) Even if you don't go the IUD route, if you're experiencing flooding periods your doctor can explore options with you. If they don't take your heavy periods (or excessive breast tenderness) seriously, seek out other medical opinions - even if it means finding a non-gyno menopause practitioner. NAMS (the North American Menopause Society) offers a searchable directory of Menopause Practitioners they certify.
*Unnecessary is in the eye of the beholder. You do you, boo. You get to choose.
How Can I Tell If I'm In Perimenopause If I Have A Mirena? Can IUDs Help With Menopause? And That One Time Martha Almost Removed Her IUD Herself (With A Little Help From Her Drunk Boyfriend)
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Hey there here's what's coming up in this episode. Did I ever tell you about, how I thought I might remove my own? Well, it was, it was drunken. It was a drunken love fueled crazy idea. But I was dating this guy and I was facing, the empty nest and I thought I could totally have one more. So one night, you know, romantically drinking champagne, talking about whatever, and I said, I'll take that i u d out right now. And he is like, what? I'm like, oh, I've seen, I've had one taken out. It's not that bad. You need, you just need steady pressure, I would need your help do you have any pliers, . Cause I wanted him to get a really strong grasp on the strings, and just steadily. I said, you can't, you can't. Chicken out. Welcome to the My Aloof Vagina Podcast, where we explore the distress and surprise of our midlife transitions. We take menopause seriously, but we don't take ourselves seriously, we believe that learning what to expect in perimenopause can be entertaining. It's inevitable, so we may as well equip ourselves and have a good. time In this episode, talk about midlife issues that are on our minds. What are some doctors using to manage perimenopause symptoms? Why is being drunk in love dangerous when middle age is bearing down on you? Get the answers to these questions in this episode. by the way I would love to stay in touch. So please join my email email@example.com. You'll always be the first to know what's going on. And I promise not to spam you. At this point in my life, I'm just too lazy. So this episode's another case of me needing to remove my friend, but not wanting to lose my stories or the subject matter because it's important stuff. So what's left of the original episode is just my side of the conversation and my stories. So I interject here and there to add context. I wanna make sure we talk about it a little bit. The flooding periods as a perimenopause symptom, because nobody ever told me, I was 50 years old. The first time that I told someone was happening you, and you said, oh. because I remember I was saying my heartbeat that every time my heartbeat, it would feel like it would gush out when I was at the hotel and I said, I'm, I'm worried something's wrong with me. You said, oh honey, that's perimenopause. Right? And no one had told me. So all those years of heavy periods in the years leading up to it, no doctor had said anything. Everyone knew I was have an anemia. No one said a word, but that one was the worst one. That was the first time I had a flooding period. And I remember thinking, That I was hemorrhaging, that something had happened, that something was wrong. When you put a super tampon in and, and it, and like half an hour later you're like, oh, Oh that's what was happening. Wait, before we go on, favorite thing about this topic is we have definitely gotten rid of all the male listeners front., they've all, they've all switched to some other one of the sex pods or something. with the dominatrix, right? Well, I thought a flash period was when you were months into thinking you're into menopause, right? Because menopause is just one day, 365 days after your last period. On sex in the city. I thought that Charlotte's situation, it was a flooding period obviously cuz she had an accident. and it does make you feel like you're in a, in doing your high again or something. Right? It's, this crazy thing. But the flash period I think is when you think you're in it, cuz it's been long enough and maybe you didn't track when the last one was, , you think you're post-menopausal and then you have a random period. definitely heavy . The the scene of having a pub accident in public is what resonated. Cuz I've been on a plane. First of all, we used to joke that it seemed like I was always on a plane on day two, which was always the heaviest, this is before I realized I was already in perimenopause and that was what was going on with these heavy periods. And I can't tell you how many times I've had an emergency situation where I have to go to the flight attendant and ask for support or were, I've been sitting in my seat trying to figure out a time to go to the bathroom to deal with my emergency. It seems to make him worse. what's my other bathroom emergency? Oh, please, please refer to the episode on incontinence my bladder emergency in the cockpit of a plane. Sorry, uh, because I've never spoken about it. That's the first time I ever told that story. I haven't spoken about it in 12 years. Now, now everyone knows, but that's why I don't even think of it. But the, the period ones were a situation where sometimes they have pads in there, sometimes they don't. Paper towels, the whole shebang trying to like, from both sides blot it so it's not so bad. Cause I'm in leggings or jeans on a plane right Tying whatever I have my scarf for like a little sarong around my waist so I can walk off the plane without anyone noticing. And I hadn't had that happen since, you know, my freshman year in, in high school. Christina Kuzmic had someone on, she's on Facebook. She does a lot of stuff, and she had a woman on who calls perimenopause cougar puberty. Well, did you never checked them? You've never checked your strings. I'm gonna give you homework. Here's your homework Tonight, you don't have to squat to do this either. You can, I'm sure you can reach your cervix. You gotta stick your fingers inside your vagina and just reach back and kind of bear down a little bit until you feel it's almost feels like a nose. And that's your cervix. And you'll be able to feel if your strings are hanging out, you're supposed to check 'em Every month. I don't know if it's, so I had the copper seven, I had the copper one, so I had periods and so after your period, you were supposed to check and make sure like so that you knew if the strings had shortened, right? If they were there, Now I didn't check 'em every month, I'm not saying check 'em every month, but I'm saying you might wanna check'em because then you'll know if it's gone up too far I mean, the thing is, so I, maybe this'll alleviate your concerns and maybe it won't. It'll come through the cervix the normal way and they're designed to be able to be pulled out., I say it was so much experience cuz I've had two removed. Did I ever tell you about, how I thought I might remove my own? Hey, this is your cheeky reminder to join my list. Then I'll send you treats and behind the scenes stuff and more. At least I will when I actually get around to sending emails. just go to sisterhood.my aloofvagina.com to sign up, and I promise I will not bombard your inbox. And if you love this irreverent podcast, please recommend it to a friend. You think will enjoy it so that we know to keep delivering this very specific style of midlife information and stories for you. Well, it was, it was drunken. It was a drunken love fueled crazy idea. But I was dating this guy and it was definitely in the love bombing stage and I now I realize there was mutual love bombing going on cuz in reality I was like about him. But it was just very fun to just get caught up in thinking that we were. So in love and might have a baby because I, my son was a senior in high school at the time and I was facing, you know, the empty nest and I was, I don't know, 38, maybe 39, and thinking, and you hadn't inspired me yet with your baby at 43, but I definitely had family members who'd had late babies, and I thought I could totally have one more. Maybe this is the one that, this is the guy I'm gonna do it with. I'm gonna have one more, one more. Right. Like a, a miracle baby. and he was very jealous of my previous relat. He was jealous of like, of my ex-husband, which is weird, right? Because, because he'd had a baby with. I'm like, he would probably trade you , but so one night, you know, romantically drinking champagne, talking about whatever, and he was complaining again and I said, I'll take that i u d out right now. And he is like, what? I'm like, oh, I've seen, I've had one taken out. It's not that bad. You need, you just need steady pressure, steady direct I would need your help taking. I said, do you have any pliers? any any pliers, . Cause I wanted him to get a really strong grasp on the strings, which I knew were there and just steadily. I said, you can't, you can't. Chicken out. You can't let off on the pressure once you start cause you can't let it get stuck in my cervix. But once you get past a certain point, you're able to get out. So you're gonna have, I had him convinced, smashed convinced that he's gonna remove it. Cuz I, I knew at the time that I had just ovulated cuz you know, back then did you ever, like I could tell when I ovulated. So I knew it and I'm like, tonight's the night, honey. Tonight is the night. I don't wanna have to make an appointment and go in next month. Let's do it. So I had, thank God, thank God he didn't have any pliers But I think in the moment I was trying to prove my love to him and. and I think I was overcompensating cuz I didn't really, and I was thinking, oh we can just take it out ourselves. Thank God no, imagine that. 9 1 1 call. But yeah, I had it all thought out and I was explaining it to him and I convinced him and then he couldn't find the pliers. Thank God me at 38, my own I, u d removal. I, was but I will tell you this, I still, as a sober person at 50 believe that another sober person could do it because I've now had 'em removed twice. they don't do anything. They don't do anything. They don't like put anything on. I remember telling him, I told my OB G Y N when I went to get it out, I said, you know, I almost took that out six months ago. And he said, what? I said, yeah, I wasn't offering to take it out for you. I was just telling you my crazy story. She will take her medical grade. sterilized pliers. After she's widened your vagina, the spectrum, she's going to take what are essentially pliers and go in there and grab those strings and pull like this steady and pull it out. No, it doesn't hurt. In fact, right now it's like Jesus Christ superstar, T-shaped, and then it's arms hinge up like pink and then it's, it comes right out. So I promise you it's, it actually hurts less to have it removed than to have it put. Isn't she offering you progesterone when you take this thing out? Because the thing is, you don't have to have an i u D to take progesterone. You can take progesterone on your own and have all of that. The reason it's probably not stopping your hot flashes is it's at the end of its useful life and you're not getting enough progesterone anymore, Oh, I'm excited for you to get this out. I'm excited to hear about it. let me see what my sweary affirmations say about today. I know you're really gonna do it. you can't just leave it in there forever. Oh, look at it says, it says I am my own best friend. Other people are total dicks. That's interesting to me about the IUDs used Off-label for perimenopause is it's kind of a way to put you on hormone replacement without telling you they're putting you on hormone replacement. Right. They're not, indoctrinating you, they're not even acknowledging it or approving it. Cuz a lot of these mainstream doctors who you would go to and ask for hormone replacement would maybe not give it to. Your insurance company's not gonna cover it, but this is just kind of a subversive way that they are providing perimenopausal h r t to women, cuz progesterone is the first thing you need replaced. and I will say, and I, everyone makes different choices and it's not for everyone, but the progesterone is the thing that I would want if I couldn't have anything else during all of this. It is a thing that stopped the hot flashes, made it so I could. Like a normal person and stopped my boobs from aching and then also made my periods lighter.. Uh, thank you so much. This is always so much fun, . I so listen, you'll come back and you'll tell us what happens at the doctor's office. You won't mention that your friend was gonna remove her own. I interviewed mine about incontinence and they are pretty open about it. What I thought you were gonna say, she doesn't talk to you about hormones I would say I think that your gynecologist is not the right person to talk to about hormone treatment They're not endocrinologists Since it tends to be the only doctor we have, that's who we go to. but we only go once a year and I highly recommend if people are going to look into that, that they get a doctor. I mean, certainly they can give you a progesterone, prescription easily. It's the oral progesterones at the regular. Pharmacy, but you want someone who's going to test you and understands is gonna continue to change, and that a blood test is just a snapshot of that particular day and it's fluctuating constantly. someone who specializes. So I'm not a doctor again, but the moods are more estrogen and testosterone. The progesterone is more the, the breast pain, sleep, bleeding and hot flashes, estrogen, also hot flashes, Thank you for listening until next time. Take care of yourself and take care of your vagina. If you enjoyed this episode, please share it with a friend. You think would enjoy it too.