Yeah, I never got that therapy. The wait for an appointment was 10 weeks, so by the time I was seen, I had already developed such a severe case of anxiety there was no real helping me. Not only that, but the therapist wasn’t qualified for true behavior modification and tried psychotherapy instead. We talked a little about my sexual history, and I told her my loss feelings about just having gotten to a place of confidence and happy sex.
I was asked to consider how my role in life was changing. Was I ready for becoming a grandparent and an elder? Was I feeling competitive with my daughter? What would happen if I no longer felt sexy? All great questions for someone who is actually lucid and ready to take up the battle of women versus our culture’s equation of menopause with sexual death. But I felt shamed and judged instead of supported.
I struggled, became stronger and more resilient. Looking for a place to really just let go, I took yoga and joined a water tai-chi class, made up mostly of post-menopausal women whose only goal was to keep moving. I was glad to be able to shut down my thoughts for a few blessed moments in the soothing warmth of the pool; plus, no one can tell you’re crying in the water.
My faith community had recently started a group for loss, of a partner, of a friend, of ones health. I could go there each week to gain perspective and have my loss feelings accepted, reminded that I was more than this condition had made me. The fact that I’d eventually recover wasn’t lost on me; these ladies were dealing with permanence.
A whole lot of people loved and supported me throughout all this, including the amazing John, who just continued to respond to me as beautiful and sexy.
Thanks for listening; now tell me your story.