WELL-BEING

violette

POSTED: Sat, 01/16/2010 - 3:55pm

For Women Over 50:

Do any of you ever feel like your life is soon over? That you're just too old to have the energy you once did? That you care about nothing anymore? That sometimes you don't even want to take a shower? Well, I am feeling like this lately, so depressed. Don;t really know what's wrong with me. Probably menopause. UGH. It goes up---then down.....like life is gone when you're over 50........ How do you get past this? Overcome it? What do you do? I have always been so UP my whole life, but lately have really been struggling with feeling so old, and realizing my mortality, and hearing about the Haitii earthquake didn't help. And realizing all I HAD, in my younger days like a career, my little kiddos, so happy, etc., now I worry about everything.....them driving, getting cancer, being broke and desolate, etc. , etc., I just feel like I can't cope..... Any thoughts would be appreciated. Just having kind of a down day I guess. Storm coming in, feel like PMS coming on, and like I can't even figure out what to cook or how to dress.......UGH. One of those moments. Thanks for listening. I hate ageing.....
REPLIES 36  (Jump to bottom of page)

Lynda

POSTED: Mon, 10/08/2012 - 4:26pm

new goals

Earlier this year in July, on my 57th birthday, I did my first ever triathlon. I came last - 100th out of 100 but I was presented with a mini birthday cake and they sang Happy Birthday to me and cheered! It was totally wonderful. Find a goal and go for it.

cwlorente

POSTED: Mon, 10/08/2012 - 6:30pm

new goals

Good for you! It is never too late. You're an inspiration. I have to admit, I had to take time off on my 50th and 60th birthdays to think about my life and what I would do with the rest of it. But it didn't depress me; it only fueled my desire to get going on things I still wanted to do. I hope Violette found peace with it all.

JSB

POSTED: Sun, 10/30/2011 - 6:33pm

Where the devil

is the new posting ?

Marilyn

POSTED: Mon, 10/31/2011 - 9:26am

Here it is Jean, posted by Bren

Very good!!! I do so agree Marilyn! Now at my age,i have learned to slow down and smell the roses! I have let go of things i can not change, i wake up thankful everyday i have of good health,and my husband beside me! Small blessings are so dear to me now,such as,children laughing and playing,sunrise and sunsets to see,the changing of each season to enjoy,friends to laugh with,walks in the park, flowers to smell...theres so much to life to enjoy! I love and like were i am right now! Bren

Bella koma

POSTED: Sun, 01/17/2010 - 4:11pm

Dear Violette~

OH Violette~ I can SO sympathize! I went through this exact same thing, when I turned 50. My depression was also compounded by aging parents that I adored, and my mother's early detection of Alzheimer's. My feelings of despair matched what you are describing..and it felt like I had no time to make my life matter. That I had wasted my life and was of no use to anyone. I thought of my mortality, my regrets, my choices...and I also believed, without a doubt, that I was worthless. At the time, I did not go find any therapist (we had no insurance or money to do this). Looking back, now...that might have helped. I had no one to talk to, and no energy to fight through the fog. I began calling it the 'black vortex of hell." Your story sounds so familiar, I wanted to cry for you. If I could reach through the miles, and hug you, I would. My own amateurish guess would be this: I believe that your hormones from menopause (peri?) need adjusting...and if you can find someone to talk to, it would help. I struggled with my own depression, and through the three years of my parents' decline, drinking way too much wine. My marriage was damaged in that I believed I was totally invisible to my husband. (He felt clueless on what on earth was going on with me, and thought I was blaming him for something. So, his way to handle the fear was to just ignore me. I didn't know this, for years afterward..) Without going into a lengthy discussion on THAT subject, let me say what I did to crawl out of my hole. First, I allowed myself to feel the loss. The loss of the earlier years, and my opportunities missed. To realize that now my life was in a new stage, but far from over. That I could now choose, again, how to face my years. Then, I did two things that made a huge difference immediately. I found a compounding pharmacy, (in the late 90s these were hard to come by)...and told the pharmacist all of my concerns regarding my menopausal symptoms...He had a questionnaire that I filled out, analyzing my initial status with hot flashes, sleeping patterns, moods, depression,weight gain or loss, cold extremities, etc etc. He then, set up an appt with a dr. that was onboard with bio-identical hormones. I had read Suzanne Somers books, and identified with her situation. This dr.did a blood panel, and ran thyroid tests, which gave the pharmacist a formula to work from.He discovered how low I was in essential hormones. He compounded a tablet that I place under my tongue twice a day...it is a combo of estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. I also was discovered to be a little low on thyroid. Thus, a small thyroid pill was added daily. It didn't cost much to do this, and the results were extraordinary. After a few days, I was sleeping soundly, without hot flashes, and my mood became brighter. The mental fog began to lift, and my depression just dissolved. The adjustment changed my life. I am not kidding..or exaggerating. I have never felt better. I have done this now, since 2005. I have it checked, each year during my annual physical, and as my menopause has increased its position in my body, the hormones have been adjusted slightly. At some point, this will adjust downward a little, but with the benefit of stronger bones, and body...I will not give them up completely. My sex life is back to normal, more like when I was in my 20s...seriously. Where the desire had dropped, diminished, and seemed just too much effort...now that is changed...Which makes a woman feel more womanly, right? The other thing I did, was take a walk, religiously, every day for 30 mins. I did this early in the morning, when the world is fresh, and awakening. I treated it as a mediation of sorts...a cleaning out...a cleansing. I grasped onto this with both hands, refusing to allow any interruption. Some days I could only do 15 mins, others I got in a full hour. It was hard at first, wanting to just crawl back under the covers, sleep my life away...but I made myself. I just kept saying to myself," one day at a time." This did two things, gave me energy, and a sense of accomplishment. Plus, it let me free my worries...at least for that few minutes. So, Ma Cherie, I wish I could sit and talk with you about this, and help. Maybe at least, I can give you a direction to go. I do believe this can be eliminated, this sense of despair. Please let me know how you are doing...I am always here to listen...Bon Chance! As Ever, Bella Koma

violette

POSTED: Mon, 01/18/2010 - 1:15pm

Thank you Bella Koma

Thank you so much Bella Koma! How wonderful to read your response! Thank you so much for your heartfelt reply. I got my period yesterday so it must have been a huge case of PMS!!! I feel so much better today already....how weird what hormones can do...... Have a beautiful day~

Cecily

POSTED: Sun, 01/17/2010 - 1:17pm

Perceived vulnerability

I'm going to be 55 soon, but recall quite vividly my feelings of vulnerability at 50. They mirrored my feelings as a teen struggling to find her place in the world, as well as the very hormonal reactions I had as a new mother. My nights were filled with a tidal wave of emotion, mostly focused on my feelings of being ill equipped to care for my children financially if anything happened to my husband. I also ruminated on the awful what-ifs in the event both my husband and I were killed in an accident. I would see my orphan waifs cast into a hostile world without protection. Then, a couple of years ago, I lost my brakes while driving down a steep hill and decided in light of a certain crash to drive into a stone wall to avoid crossing a line of traffic where I might kill someone else. It was a harrowing experience, but I walked away with only a bump on the head. But, it helped me put things into perspective: each day is a precious gift, and it is best to live it to the fullest. Worries can consume your life, and it's simply not worth it. If you suspect hormonal flux may be making this worse, get thee to a doctor! Don't waste another day.

violette

POSTED: Sun, 01/17/2010 - 2:08pm

What wonderful responses~~~~

You all are so incredibly wise and knowledgeable. Everyone's response is so amazing. Thank you. I'm just not used to this wave to emotion I never have felt in my life ever before, until I turned the big 50! Guess it's not only me who can tend to be a complete "worry wart". Worrying is really useless though isn't it? What/where does it get us? No where. We have to let our kids go and live their own lives too. Every mom worries about their kids.....this is my main worry, that and money...... Feeling much better today, Sunday. Just sat in front of our fire last night alone after everyone went to bed, feeling the warmth all over me with my kitty on my lap. It was so comforting. I felt so happy, slept good, and today is a beautiful day. Guess it's important to just ride out our feelings sometimes. Go with them, then they pass. Hubby picked up some French blueberry croissants this morning, YUM--so it started off good!!!Now will take doggies on a nice long walk.... Thanks everyone for your responses~~~it's good to know other women over 50 have experienced the same things I am going through..... Have a good day everyone~

Bella koma

POSTED: Sun, 01/17/2010 - 4:17pm

Oh, Yippee! You seem

Oh, Yippee! You seem better..I didn't read this post until just now! I saw your thread, and HAD to write! Now, it seems you have regained a bit of balance, no? My own worries are money...(we are self-employed)...and the chance of outliving my husband... Money for retirement... This is paralyzing to contemplate! I will, though, stay determined to remain optimistic, try hard to live a life of healthy choices, and to keep laughing! It IS comforting to know that all of you have experienced the generally same fears as we crested 50! This forum is indeed, a comfort~ Bella

Marilyn

POSTED: Sun, 01/17/2010 - 12:18pm

Violette

Age is a privelege to be enjoyed. We all have bad days when we think that our life is not what it used to be but we must 'get off our butts' (sorry to be so blunt) and go forward not be continually looking backwards to what once was. Every part of our lives is precious to be lived to the full. I know sometimes it is difficult, when things go wrong, to be positive but at the end of the day we only get one chance at life and it must not be wasted. Only two things are certain in life, we are born and we die. Make sure that what happens inbetween is the best it can be. Our children are in charge of their own lives and as long as we can be sure we give them the best grounding we can they will be successful and live their lives to the full. We cannot protect them for ever.

Take deep breaths, look life in the eye and march onwards.

bren67

POSTED: Sun, 10/30/2011 - 5:10pm

Very good!!!

I do so agree Marilyn! Now at my age,i have learned to slow down and smell the roses! I have let go of things i can not change, i wake up thankful everyday i have of good health,and my husband beside me! Small blessings are so dear to me now,such as,children laughing and playing,sunrise and sunsets to see,the changing of each season to enjoy,friends to laugh with,walks in the park, flowers to smell...theres so much to life to enjoy! I love and like were i am right now! Bren

JSB

POSTED: Sun, 01/17/2010 - 12:43pm

Good Morning Dear Marilyn

Looking backwards wastes the time we have now.Remember what was good fondly,learn from the difficulties and live NOW.OXO Jean

Cecily

POSTED: Sun, 01/17/2010 - 1:23pm

So true, Jean.

But in your line of work, you must see this often. What do you advise people who let these bad thoughts snowball into an emotional avalanche? Yes, my guess is that the answer would be different for each person, but in these months of long nights and little sunlight in this northern hemisphere, I think there must be some generic advise which might help those of us with garden variety blahs.

JSB

POSTED: Sun, 10/30/2011 - 6:36pm

Where are you?

I wonder all the time.Do you still check in?OXO Jean

JSB

POSTED: Sun, 01/17/2010 - 4:04pm

Winter blues/blahs

A very real thing to struggle with mood in the dark and cold.Light and extra Vit.D will make a major difference.Try to get out each day,no matter how dull,for a 10 min."sunshine"walk.It does help.Get a "Day Light"and sit in front of it for 20--30 mins.each day.I have one and I am a different person this year.Make your home bright,lights and candles going.Keep warm.We lack Vit.D at this time of year,take a supplement up to 1000 mgms.a day.Find a hobby that will give you pleasure.

Before winter started this year I rearranged my home and realized when I had finished I had set it up to be cozy and warmly lit.It feels wonderful.

Stick with us.We love you:-)))Jean

Cecily

POSTED: Sun, 01/17/2010 - 8:10pm

Thanks, Jean!

It's reassuring to hear you say that you are getting through the winter months with greater ease with your self-care regimen. I'm going to look into the 'Day Light.' Is it by prescription only?

JSB

POSTED: Mon, 01/18/2010 - 12:23am

No problem

You don't need a prescription for a Day Light.But if you have Ins. that might cover it,ask your GP for one.They can be purchased in pharmacies here.Next year,since the Light has made such a difference I am going to try to reduce the anti-depressant I take.It helps but it is the Light that is my saviour.It may not work for everyone but it is worth a try.This is the first Jan.in over 20 years that I do not feel completely hopeless and I am more active.Still need a lot of sleep but that's fine.Please let me know how you do.OXO Jean

violette

POSTED: Sat, 01/16/2010 - 5:45pm

PLEASE DO NOT RESPOND UNLESS YOU ARE OVER 50

Thank you. This post was meant for those of us women over 50. Please be respectful of this. merci!

snorklee

POSTED: Sat, 01/16/2010 - 5:29pm

Dear Violette...

I know where you are coming from here... I'm 53 too, and starting over, basically. At times I'm scared because I don't have someone to be with in my old age. At times, I feel like I'm too old to be healthy for long. But I think this is just me looking at typical American stereotypes and comparing myself.

Women are too hard on themselves. Older women will never look like younger women, but that doesn't mean that older women can't dress and look beautiful. In fact, being older gives a woman license to please no one but herself, if she likes. Paying more attention to what you like, and what gives you pleasure is so much easier at our age. Our children are grown, or growing, and no longer need us like they did. Husbands become complacent, or in my case, married to someone else. :) So it's our time to dote on ourselves now. Thank God we lived long enough to get to the age of rediscovering our true selves.

There are days when coping seems insurmountable, but I take that as a cue to sit with a mug of something comforting, and lay low for a day, taking a much deserved rest, and acknowledging that I've worked hard in my life for everyone that I love. If I need a day to sit and be pensive, then so be it. It's all how you think about, Violette. Take this day as a rest day. Don't do anything that you don't really want to do. Depression is said to be unexpressed sadness. If you give yourself the gift of time and let the feelings come, and give them the expression they need, the depression will lift.

One thing that keeps me focused on trying to live everyday, is my job. I'm a Hospice nurse. When I take care of someone younger than me who is dying, (and you would be surprised how many of my patients are younger than me), it makes me feel so grateful have been given the chance to live past 50, and it makes me sadly aware of how fragile our lives really are. We truly never know when it is our time.

So, to follow Mireille's philosophy, take our pleasures everyday, and revel in being alive, no matter our age.

Cheers,
Deb

valerie51

POSTED: Mon, 01/18/2010 - 12:58pm

Thank you

Thank you for this post Deb. It really hit home, and I came away with some new ideas for those days when I'm feeling moody and emotional and don't know why. OK...got a question totally unrelated. How do you make your paragraphs here??? I've tried and tried, and can't find the correct symbol. Thanks!

Elizabeth G

POSTED: Thu, 01/21/2010 - 6:45pm

Valerie: Paragraphs

Valerie, I hope you see this. To make paragraphs, type open bracket (right next to your M key, above the comma) then the letters BR, then a close bracket (right above the period). Type it twice. It took me a few times too!

valerie51

POSTED: Fri, 01/22/2010 - 1:49am

Thank You!

Thanks so much Elizabeth!

violette

POSTED: Sat, 01/16/2010 - 5:40pm

Thanks so much Deb!

I cried when I read your post. Gosh I'm so emotional! Thank you for your kind and sweet message! That's amazing your nursing you do Deb. I wish I had some sort of a meaningful job now in my "later years" like you. But I don't. I gave up the field of law cuz I hated it. It was all about making money, and nothing else. EWWWWW. In my "old age"....somehow, I get the feeling there is something else I must do. Pray with me, I'll discover it, with God's help. Bless You Deb~

snorklee

POSTED: Sat, 01/16/2010 - 5:53pm

You will find it...

I have complete faith that you'll find what you're meant to do. The very feelings you have that there is something else out there, are the feelings that will guide you to whatever it is.

For what it's worth, I didn't graduate from nursing school until I was 42. So, in a way, that was my mid-life career change.

In the words of Olympia Dukakis, in the movie Moonstruck... "It ain't over til it's over."

:)
Deb

jas

POSTED: Sat, 01/16/2010 - 4:39pm

my experiences

I do think reading about how other women cope with ageing helps. Living Beauty by Bobbi Brown was a very good book. Several Women had helpful things to say about aging. For me, bioidentical homones that I recently went on are making a difference. The first day I started replacing lost progesterone I felt a "Wow" this feels like the old me. For my sister, who also has been on 2 weeks the change is slower, but she is also liking it. Also I am again doing lots of juicing, and fresh veggies. I notice a difference when I eat lots of fruit and veggies it does affect my mood and energy levels. Violette, I wouldn't underestimate the power of the storm coming in either, I get deeply affected by strong nearby weather patterns. As for Haiti and other things, I really like Pema Chodren's teaching on breathing in the pain, and breathing out compassion. After a half hour of doing this, I feel different. I am facing the pain, all pain, we all have it...and breathing into the love, and beauty that too is part of being human.

violette

POSTED: Sat, 01/16/2010 - 5:26pm

Thanks Jas

Thx for all you say. I am listening to my neighbors above us doting on their many dogs, as they have no kids.... It's so much fun to hear their conversations as hubby and I do out our window daily......"come here Fido, heel Clancy", stop that Jessibell".....etc.....too numerous to even name. I met this couple and they have no kids, only pets.....I can't help feeling somewhat taken aback as they have no clue what it's like raising kids today in this day and age, and in this fallen world we live in, and managing to keep your sanity. LOL I somehow find women who do NOT have kids and who are not moms, don't even know, or have a clue what moms who do, struggle with, as their life is just about them, and no one else. This angers me yes, somewhat. Sometimes very much. It's so easy to speak about "living your inner French girl and succombing to this pleasure and that pleasure, about enjoying chocolate, etc. but UNTIL a woman has kids, IMO, SHE NEVER KNOWS truly what life is even about. Thx though jas for the good book recommendations. They sound awesome, I will check them out. God Bless!

Elizabeth G

POSTED: Thu, 01/21/2010 - 6:42pm

Really must strongly disagree!!

I don't mean to be argumentative, and of course this is only my opinion, but I strongly disagree with the statement "UNTIL a woman has kids, IMO, SHE NEVER KNOWS truly what life is even about." I have two sons; they've enriched my life; and I'm grateful for the immense love I feel for them. However, I'm certain that I would have had a happy, full life even if I hadn't become a mother. I know a number of childfree people and it's sometimes a conscious choice and sometimes a matter of circumstances, happy or unhappy. Everyone struggles in some way, with kids or jobs or aging parents or health issues or any combination of a number of things. I simply can't agree that childfree means clueless and/or unfulfilled.

violette

POSTED: Thu, 01/21/2010 - 8:05pm

A woman without children.....

Didn't at all mean to come across as harsh, and assuming a woman without children cannot be fulfilled or happy or have/live a full enriching life. By all means she can, and many perhaps have never desired children, that is their choice fully to make. Sorry if this was offensive to anyone here. I was merely expressing my views of course. That's all. From only my perspective. In ways a childless woman may be happier than we women with kids, as she probably doesn't have near the worries of a human being that she made inside her, and all the worry stemming from this. GASP! Although of course life is frought with worries of many different kinds from all sides. I know though, that my friends who do not have children, seem to view life completely differently than I do, for some reason. It's the one thing that instantly causes you to get your eyes off yourself, (from my experience of course)....and love another more than yourself. Very weird. To each his own in this life. We all must do the best we can, with the cards we've been dealt, or try to anyway.

JSB

POSTED: Sun, 01/17/2010 - 11:18am

as Mireille says..

we live our lives in phases and stages,all of us.And we can't know the full meaning of any life but our own.There are reasons too numerous to mention as to why women do or do not have children.Some of those reasons can be quite painful,if we do not.We can choose to be empathetic with each other.Empathy makes life more bearable.Life is about many,deep ,important things not only having and raising children.So much gives my life value.As so much gives your life value.You chose a particular path and live with that.I have followed another and live with the consequences of that.If you have read any of my posts on motherhood,you will know that I have the deepest respect for mothers,in or out of the home.It is the most important thing one will do,if given the chance.

As to your feelings about ageing and being over 50,you have my truest empathy.I felt horrid when I turned 50.It took most of the decade to sort it out.My marriage went down the drain,my health became more precarious,I struggled and continue to struggle with my weight and I had an abrupt menopause at 49 due to surgery.The hormones were not fun to cope with.I tried HRT but it really didn't do much for me(each response is individual).During that phase of my life I also received AMAZING gifts from life.A closer relationship with my son and my incredible grandchildren.I learned who my true friends are and I began to finally like myself.This required work and I sought counselling on more than one occasion.My GP and Gynecologist were very helpful during this time,as well.May I suggest you consult your Gynecologist and tell her/him and tell them exactly what you are going through.There is help for your discomfort.You can only live YOUR life.Make it the best you are able.

Now one of my wonderful gifts from my 50s wants to go for a walk.Have a much better day.OXO Jean him exactly what is happening to you.

violette

POSTED: Sat, 01/16/2010 - 5:29pm

BTW Jas....how old are you?

I always thought of you being in your 20's. And a youngster. How old are you if you do not mind me asking.????? Are you married? have kids?

jas

POSTED: Sun, 01/17/2010 - 2:50pm

almost 50

I'm almost 50...47. I don't have kids. I do know the ups and downs of moods, and especially hormone fluxuations. I'm not married, but have been in long relationships. It is different. I don't pretend to know what it is to be a mother. I feel quite inexperienced as a woman, so that is probably why I come off as 20...my life has been lived quite differently than most people.

Cecily

POSTED: Sun, 01/17/2010 - 4:25pm

It's all good...

....and even better that you reached out as a slightly younger sister to all of us 50-plussers here. Compassion and empathy is in such short supply in the world, that I appreciate any effort to relate. For instance, I don't know what it feels like to lose a child, but that wouldn't stop me from trying to lend emotional support to someone who has. Seeing your kindness here, I'm sure you would too. And when I look back, some of the best insights people have offered on problem areas in my life have come from people I would least expect to understand. Perhaps, some distance from the storm allows you to see it clearer than someone in the eye of it. Or maybe people learn life lessons in vastly different ways which allow them to relate to a feeling without having gone through exact same circumstances.

jas

POSTED: Mon, 01/18/2010 - 10:55am

Thanks Cecily

Thanks for your words Cecily.

cigalechanta

POSTED: Thu, 01/21/2010 - 5:34pm

way over 50

no family, my husband died of cancer two years ago but my dog keeps me going, and I tell myself, I'm too busy to get old.I have my zest for good food and wine, I'm still a fashionista. I wish I were 50 again. You need to think better of yourself,

JSB

POSTED: Thu, 01/21/2010 - 6:35pm

Way over 50

You have earned the wisdom and self-esteem.Clearly,you have come through a very painful time and done it with grace.BTW,I am WAY over 50,too.And it is good. Jean

Marilyn

POSTED: Fri, 01/22/2010 - 11:52am

Me too

Love the stage of your life you are in, make the most of what you have, as I have said many times before 'Age is a privelege'. With age hopefully come wisdom to deal gracefully with whatever life throws at us and this is what you have so obviously done. Take care and enjoy your life. Marilyn

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