40-Somethings - Facing "the change"? Already???

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08-14-2008, 11:52 AM
Left my 30s last month (what a fabulous decade it was!!) and what's the very first thing I experience? An erratic period after life-long predictable, bang-on regular cycles.


When I strangely started having PMS symptoms WAY too early in my cycle I thought I might be pregnant! I started menstruating when I was 10 - does that have any influence on early perimenopause?


08-15-2008, 10:11 AM

I am 42, and for the past few years, things have changed for me too. At first, I went from a textbook 28 day cycle to a still regular 25 day cycle, and now am beginning to get a little more erratic. It can vary from 24-31 days. You never really know for sure. And pms? Yup. I am more aware of it than I was before.

So far no hot flashes, but who knows?

I don't know about any correlation from menarche, but when did your mom change? My mom had me relatively late (38... remember this was the 1960s) and she just up and QUIT right after I came. Seems her body had had enough! LOL She was not yet 40.

Given this, I am not surprised to start sputtering a little now. Things could drag on for years. Who knows? If you are of the herbally-goddessy sort, check out Susun Weed's menopause book. She has a whole big section on "this is menopause", and it helped me realize what's normal.


08-15-2008, 12:52 PM
I'm 42, and I've started having mild hot flashes. My period has never been really regular (25-41 days), so I'm not seeing any change there. My grandmother didn't hit menopause until she was 58; my mom got the first symptoms at about 51 and immediately started HRT. Who knows what's coming?

08-15-2008, 06:13 PM
41 for a few more months and I started some heavy bleeding, then went back to normal, now I get my TOM every two weeks- not heavy but a pain. Trust me I have had ultrasounds to make sure there is no underlying issue. BC pills-no help in keeping me regular. What a rude awakening I thought peri-menopause meant your TOM would get further apart and eventually disappear. Re hot flashes- no but I do get overly warm at night- go to bed cold with the airconditioner on and wake up too warm but not sweaty in the middle of the night. While my husband pees standing up, sleeps through the night and experienced no pain when his children were born.

08-17-2008, 10:19 AM
I am 44 and have been going thru some of this stuff for 5 yrs now. I had to go on the pill for a few years to get reg. and then blood pressure got high and had to go off it. My dr told me earlier you start you period(9) the longer you go...talk about not fair!! My cycle has gone from 28-30 days down to 21 days and I always spot halfway thru. Dr said its just part of it and to basically deal with it. My periods are usually much heavier and I even had to start an iron pill this month. fun fun. I am expecting this to go into my early 50s. NO hot flashes yet. THis month has actually been alot better no where near as heavy.:O)

08-17-2008, 10:21 AM
life change...my moms went to every two weeks and then just stopped im praying for just stopping as well. I go to sleep cold every night and wake up sweating also..hadnt put it together ..thanks maybe thats whats going on with me too.

Hermit Girl
08-21-2008, 01:59 PM
I'm 46 and two years ago things started to change a little. "After my whole life having exact 26 to 28 day cycles, I suddenly skipped a period for 2 months, then came back to regular, but more frequently and heavier. I've skipped a couple of times now. Yes, I believe I am having hot flashes once in a while, for sure, and I'm definitely SpitFire Moody, so bad that I've had to quit caffeine to save myself and my marriage . Now that I'm off of caffeine I feel a lot better , way less anxiety. My doctor said that the hot flashes are from the brain trying to regulate the hormones, makes sense to me. Periods still are all over the place, but oh well, this is another phase in my life, and now that I'm a little use to it, I'll embrace it.

08-22-2008, 08:43 PM
I too started aunt flo at 10. My GYN told me that woman have been starting menapause earllier than normal and they are not sure why. I started having symptoms 4 years ago and I am 46. And yes the hot flashes and missed periods have started but I am okay with it I figure the sooner I start the faster I won't have to deal with aunt flo anymore. You are a little young but stress and change of diet can also cause missed periods or late ones my doctor has also told me. i would check with your doctor if it keeps happening and see what she/he says..

09-04-2008, 10:59 AM
Hi ladies,
Question to my older & wiser peers.
Do you think I may be starting peri-meno? I'm 39 & 24 months (sounds way better to me than OWNING 41!) Ha ha ha.... My monthly cycles are like clock work, same exact the following month, give or take a few days and always lasting about 7 days. However, the past 2 months, my cycle now last a total of 10 days. Yup, 10. I am just wondering if this is pretty norm being the big M is years away?
Oh yeah, I honestly can not wait for a "HOTFLASH", I am and have always been cold, cold, cold & I am hoping the hotflashes will help warm me up!!!! Crazy as it sounds..

Shy Moment
09-04-2008, 11:24 AM
I started soon after I had my tubal at age 29. Doc said it wasn't something that was common but it does happen. Has been a fun 16 years lol. Just the last couple of months it has intensified. I hope it is over soon lol I am tired of not knowing if I am going to be hot or cold. My DOT's were always like clock work too. Now, over the last couple of years they can be fine for months at a time and then I can skip one or have one that last weeks. YES I said weeks. Think the last time that happened I had one for 4 months and they said there was nothing at all wrong with me after they did tons of tests and cost me enough to buy a new car lol. They went from every 28 days to now they are between 21 and 28 days. Which the doc said is still normal. At least I don't have the night sweets. I just have the hot and cold flashes.

09-04-2008, 12:04 PM
When I was 38 I started getting massive hot flashes and my periods went from every 30 days & lasting 7 days to every 21 days & lasting a total of 2 1/2 days.

I sleep with just a sheet on me most days, even in the dead of winter. I also sleep with a fan blowing on me every day of the year. I live just south of Chicago, so you can imagine how cold our winters can get. The most I put on the bed is a sheet & a summer blanket (the kind with holes between the stitches).

Now I've heard that perimenopause can last for 10 years or so before menopause kicks in. Oh yeah, something to look forward to.

09-04-2008, 12:34 PM
Thanks Rennie,
I too got my tubies tied, at 25. I Figured I may as well get fixed & have fun, so I done did & Yup I still am having lots and lots of fun!
Oh the joys of womanhood I tell ya Deb, I am quite the opposite. It's still summer and I still sleep in sweats, and a down comforter, plus a big thick grandma made quilt, and I am known to still turn on the heated matress pad on my side of the bed, being it stays on our bed year 'round! Yup my hubby sweats bigtime, but I am cozy comfy! Can you say frozen like a popsicle? My hands and feet mostly, reynauds syndrome. My mom & sister are the same.

Shy Moment
09-04-2008, 08:20 PM
I thought it was great to get rid of the baby bed and keep the pay pen lol. My hubby goes nuts because we don't know from one min to the next if I am going to have 20 blankets on the bed with the fan blowing or just a sheet to cover with lol.

09-09-2008, 10:34 PM
Hello Ladies,
I'm 47 this last Aug. I've had irregular periods and mood swings for 4 years now. I've missed my period for three mos. Could I possibly be done?
I've gained a lot of weight. Depression hit me hard with this.Why? I have no clue. Not having a period is a time to party, not be sad. It's just that I feel all the symptoms and such.....bloating, cramps and then no period to stop the symptoms. Argh

Anyone actually stop right around this age?



09-09-2008, 10:36 PM
Shy Moment,
My symptoms started right after my tubal, too. Hmmmmm. I'm happy (not for you going this long, though) that i'm not alone. I thought it was just me. But I swear the periods following my tubal....have never been the same


Shy Moment
09-09-2008, 10:54 PM
Generally things have been fine since the tubal but sometimes they just go haywire. It was much nicer when the cycles were 28 days apart for 7 days instead of how they are now every 21 days for 5 days lol. At least I haven't had to go through 3 month cycles for awhile lol. You aren't alone. There are more woman out there that have had this happen to them after they had tubal then people know. It sure isn't something you are warned about before you have the procedure done.

09-09-2008, 11:03 PM
I too started aunt flo at 10. My GYN told me that woman have been starting menapause earllier than normal and they are not sure why.

I have no studies to back this up, but frankly I think it's environmental. They are finding girls hitting early puberty more and more. Every day, we are exposed to heaps of chemicals of various sorts from hormones in meat/milk to hormone mimics (endocrine disruptors) in plastics (phthalates and bisphenol-a are a couple in the news), pesticide/herbicide residues (POPs- persistent organic pollutants), and god knows that else.

Even if we eat organic, we swim in a chemical sea and our bodies are exposed to it. Hormones/chemicals have influenced amphibian/fish population sex ratios as well as human sex ratios in the arctic. I fully expect that a few years from now they will "discover" that it is affecting middle aged women as well as young girls. Both groups are at hormonally sensitive times of life. I would be shocked if we were not affected by our environmental chemical load.


09-10-2008, 05:27 PM
I agree with you 100 % People also wonder why obesity is so rampant and if you think about it if our animals are given growth hormones to make them bigger faster than we eat these animals, doesn't it make sense we will get bigger to? That is why I try to stay away from meats and products with growth hormones and processed food as much as possible. But when you eat out yo don't know what you are getting. It probably has a lot to do with us hitting the change earlier too but that is just my opinion.

Speaking of pre-menapause, I just got a hot flash and it is cold in my office.

Shy Moment
09-10-2008, 10:28 PM
The doc told me is was normal to hit real menopause ( not pre menopause ) between 40 and 60. It all depends on the woman and generally runs the same through out a family. My grandmother started menopause at 40 my mother started at 45 so I guess I am pretty normal as far as the real thing lol.

10-26-2008, 05:46 PM
Friends I read this thread with great interest, as a woman in peri-menopause and as a health professional who has seen a great deal of what you are all talking about.
Yes, many women have dramatic changes to their menses after tubals and c-sections. Sometimes this is physical, like pain problems relating to "adhesions" and sometimes altered tissue, leading to endometriosis like problems. But many describe cycle changes, and I don't know of any actual physical cause, but I do know its common, maybe messing around the ovaries affects them somehow.
In my thirties I had a dramatic shift in my periods, they started coming every 23 or 24 days, but were lighter and shorter. Starting right at 40, I began to have one or two cycles are year that were 35-40 day, and then more recently, 4-5 of these long cycles. This year I have actually totally skipped more periods than I have had.
Have had a few hot flashes, helped a lot by drinking a glass of soymilk daily, and other than that, very few symptoms, so I am really happy about this part of menopause.
But the part that makes weight loss harder, and getting more of a "menopot" isn't so easy. I'm not enjoying that part at all.
fatmad, a newbie

11-30-2008, 06:31 PM
Hi, I hope you don't mind me 'butting' in.. but your conversation caught my eye.
I am very frustrated with my Doctor right now!! although, I know it is not her fault... I recently went in and pleaded for help... I turned 40 this year & I too have the erratic periods.. sometimes twice in one month,.. very heavy.. severe fatigue, weight gain, dry skin,... so very moody.. I think I have PMS all the time now... I just feel lousy more than I feel good..and recenty more headaches & anxiety!! to top that off... my hair has thinned out down to nothing... it isn't like balding because I have 'baby like' hair growing.. it is like breaking off... and I have never dyed my hair, and I don't use chemical solutions... My Doctor did labs on hormones and thyroid and OF COURSE it came back normal!!! not that I want it to come back bad... but I am going crazy here. I decided I would start working harder at taking vitamens, exercising, and taking care of me. Lets see if that works... If not I will be bald by 41. Anyone have advice?? anything...

Sarah C0nn0r
12-01-2008, 08:44 AM
I went for 2 years of having it every two weeks as well. The Doc said it might be fibroids on top of peri-menopause.

Then, I went for over a year with NO period. And now, it's back like it never left. It could have stayed gone! I really didn't miss it!

All I know is that it is super easy to gain weight at this stage in life.
Ind my hips enlarge!

12-01-2008, 05:19 PM
I am 48 and I have to tell you, the menopot is really awful. It started getting really bad for me the last couple of years.

I haven't had a period in over a year, last month. I am happy its gone. But the weight control is no control.

The hot flashes were unbareable but getting better, I just slept with an Ice Pack for year, that really helped.

Once in awhile I feel my face flush during the day, but it goes away fast. I don't dare buy sweaters or turtlenecks, and that just breaks my heart! Will I ever be able to buy sweaters again? Get those arms toned girls, I never thought I would wear sleavless, but when it comes to over heating or sleevless, I chose no sleeaves and fat upper arms wobble away! I didn't care. Now I work with wieghts so they are getting better.

Good luck with this. Get blood tests and take Estroven. ;-)

12-02-2008, 09:01 PM
will Estroven help my thinning hair?????????????

12-03-2008, 12:39 AM
but hairdressers do have some sort of special shampoo that is supposed to help menopausal women with that.

I should get it too.:?:

12-03-2008, 02:32 PM
I will check with my hairdresser. I did get blood tests.. I asked my Doc. to mail me the results ... I just don't have the faith in the Doc's like I used to... seems we have to be our own Doc's anymore...

Have a great day...!

12-03-2008, 04:22 PM
I'm in the same boat, it is so frustrating. I haven't noticed the hair thing, but the skin is much dryer than ever, and the return of hormonal break-outs--oh joy! And the uneven skin tone--I am SO careful now with sunscreen and still uneven freckling and "patches"--my dermo has given me some prescription skin lightening stuff, I think it helps but it is a constant battle since I moved to the West Coast 2 years ago. Just recently found a new larger area on forehead, and any mark, scratch, or acne leftover just doesn't blend back into the normal color anymore....:devil:

And the "weight control is no control" thing---so true........

I have for the last two years had 3-4 months no period, and sometimes two in a row, sometimes only 2-3 weeks apart, mostly lighter, but then out of the blue a heavy one, makes it tough to schedule anything....... I am 44 (for a couple of more months anyway!)

12-03-2008, 11:25 PM
Wow, modcat you are doing so great on your weight loss!!! Awesome!!!!

Yeah, don't let the meno get you down, it gets easier as you get older. I am 48~

12-14-2008, 11:23 PM
my hair has thinned out down to nothing... it isn't like balding because I have 'baby like' hair growing..

Same here, and my hair was baby fine and thin to begin with. My hairdresser said it's common and normal and the best way to slow it down is to do scalp massages.