My story: I’ve returned. HRT has given me my career back, my husband has got his wife back and my daughter has got her mum back.

At balance, we are continuously humbled by the stories many women share with us about their perimenopausal and menopausal journeys. This anonymous letter highlights how HRT changed this woman’s life, both professionally and personally.

Hi Dr Newson,

I wrote to you a year ago, when I had recently started HRT, to thank you for the invaluable help and advice I had received from you. I am a follower, not a patient, but your generosity with your expertise on your website and social media, has totally turned my life around, bringing me back from rock bottom.

I will spare you a full re-cap of the hell I went through in my late 40s but after 4 years of despair, getting nowhere with various GPs, my career, self-esteem and finances in tatters, I finally embarked on my HRT journey following your advice.

I just wanted to let you know that after years of unemployment, feeling too ill, anxious and lacking in confidence to job hunt, I have recently (at 50) started a great new job! Not just a ‘filler’ job, but a real career move – a creative position with a successful company. I have the stamina to work long, full-time hours, with a 60 mile round-trip daily commute. I drive on the motorway once more, when I had previously lost my nerve. In fact, I’ve just returned from a solo work trip to Paris – something that would have been unthinkable just 2 years ago.

I have also just enjoyed a lovely family holiday in Portugal, where I swam, walked and climbed the 365 steps (just!) to a scenic beauty spot. Again, something unthinkable before HRT, when I was crippled with lower back pain.

My husband has got his wife back and my teenage daughter has got her mum back. I socialise with friends and I contribute to society and the economy once more, all thanks to you and the wonderful little patch I stick on my hip. I don’t need the statins, anti-depressants, pain-killers, beta-blockers (etc) I’ve been prescribed over recent years.

I just needed my hormones back.

When I had reached the stage of job hunting, I enrolled on a couple of adult education courses to boost my skills and confidence. I was shocked to see that the vast majority of people on the course were women my age, all trying to salvage something of their careers. No middle-aged men, just lots of experienced women who had previously held responsible positions, now at a complete loss. The topic of menopause came up (one woman admitted to being near suicidal) and – needless to say – I soon got on my soapbox and directed them to your website and app. I’m shocked and appalled every day at the poor treatment of women in this stage of life and staggered at how much all aspects of society would benefit if we were properly treated.

Disappointingly, I’ve noticed something of a backlash against menopause campaigners in the media recently and I just wanted to counter that, in my own small way, with this note of sincere gratitude. I imagine there must be times when it’s not easy but, please, please, find the strength to keep doing what you are doing (and do so eloquently). Those of us who ‘get it’ are eternally grateful and are doing all we can to convert the doubters and pave the way for a better future for our daughters.

My story:  I’ve returned. HRT has given me my career back, my husband has got his wife back and my daughter has got her mum back.

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