At the beginning of our menopausal journey, Theresa-Venus observed that mentioning hot flashes or anything related to menopause in mixed company (mixed company meaning ‘us’ and anyone who was not menopausal) was like "farting in public". It seemed that talking about the "Change" was politically incorrect.

Well excuse us, but menopause itself is politically incorrect! We figure that the only way we midlife goddesses are going to manage this transition without completely flipping out is to openly share our thoughts, feelings, symptoms, and remedies. We’re sorry if we make the rest of you uncomfortable; you’ll get used to it eventually. We have.

Those of us who aren’t lucky enough to have their own Venus group yet may be starving for compassionate, caring information. Case in point:

I stopped into Starbucks the other day for my grande pumpkin spice latte and a HUGE maple scone (no it’s not on my diet, but I have to have some pleasure!) Looking around for a place to sit in the crowded coffee shop, a lovely midlife woman caught my eye and waved me over to the seat next to her. We exchanged vital information. Me: summer resident, former nurse, current consultant. Her: East Coast resident, here for conference, city manager. We indulged in these pleasantries for all of two minutes before we jumped into discussing the big M.

She was agonizing over hormone therapy. "I’ve been on it three years and am worried that I should get off them. My doctor isn’t concerned, but I am. Then again, I feel so depressed sometimes, maybe I shouldn’t chance it. Is that normal do you think?"

We discussed bioidenticals vs herbal supplements vs her HRT. We talked about St. John’s Wort as an interim measure for her sadness, though she was immensely heartened to realized that her depression was normal. For the better part of an hour, we shared, laughed, and sighed together.

We didn’t notice if our conversation was "politically incorrect" or if it bothered the rest of the Starbuck’s crowd. (Although we did notice the place was nearly empty when we finished.) We hugged like old friends and like the new sisters that we are. Together and out loud – that’s how we’ll make it through this and out the other side.