Very sadly I routinely encounter women who are feeling suicidal at the time of their menopause. They are at their wit’s end, past the point of seeing any positive future for themselves. It breaks my heart to see them suffering needlessly, going without the help that could help them reclaim their wellbeing and put hope back in their hearts.
Kate Spade, like so many other women in their fifties, was experiencing depression which has a devastating effect on self- esteem as well as relationships. The fact that such a talented and successful women would be in the mindset to hang herself makes me feel beyond angry when I know so well that women can so often overcome depression within a matter of a few months, without taking drugs or hormones, and get back to having fulfilling loving relationships. But instead, she was left to suffer, getting to the darkest place which made her feel she had no option other than to take her own life.
In my most recent survey on over 600 women, only 20 percent of the women didn’t experience depression in their fifties. In fact, 44 percent of the sample were suffering with moderate to severe depression and another 37 percent said they had mild depression. It’s a common symptom amongst women at the time of their menopause, it has massive ramifications, and it’s not being properly managed. Ninety-one percent of the women felt their relationships were strained as they ventured through menopause, leaving many couples living sexless lives due to lack of libido and low mood.
From research we conducted, and had published over the years, we found that low levels of important nutrients are often the underlying cause of depression and this is confirmed by a significant amount of more recent research from around the world. When nutrient levels are corrected, women consume a wholesome diet and do regular exercise they look at the world through completely different coloured lenses. Symptoms of depression literally disappear and women once again feel more loving.
I have been working with women successfully helping them overcome both PMS and menopause symptoms, including depression, for over 30 years. Hundreds of thousands of women are handed prescriptions for anti-depressants by their doctors, rather than having the underlying cause of their symptoms investigated and addressed. They are often left in a zombie state, gaining weight from the medication, with their self-esteem and relationships in tatters, whilst the pharmaceutical industry profit from their ‘illness’.
Julia was suicidal a few months ago and her husband was at the point of leaving her. ‘Until 8 weeks ago I felt very low, disconnected and unhappy. I felt fearful too and had no self-esteem. I was extremely anxious, very depressed and suffering from brain fog. I was struggling to get through the days. It had a huge impact on my family life and my relationship with my husband. My husband had become my carer, as he didn’t know what else to do. I went into my own bubble. I found it hard to mix in social circles and at family gatherings. I couldn’t see the point of going on and really thought that my life was over. A friend referred me to Maryon Stewart and in desperation, I went on her virtual 6 Week Boot Camp. It was good to have support from Maryon and the women in the group. I found it very confusing for the first few weeks but by week 4, things clicked into place. I started to feel the benefit and haven’t looked back. It’s been 8 weeks now and I really feel I have my life back. I cannot get over the difference in how I feel in such a short space of time. I am no longer anxious, I’m sleeping, I have energy and my self-esteem has returned. I feel connected again instead of removed from the world. My husband is delighted as he feels he has his wife back and I’ve even managed to get a job I love. I am beyond grateful’.
I feel sad, angry and frustrated that women like Kate Spade are not being given proper help. Instead, they are often labelled mentally ill, feeling like they can only manage their situation with medication. They remain withdrawn from life, estranged from their partners and too scared to communicate. They lose sight of their ability to experience the joys of a loving relationship. The fallout is devastating for them as well as their partner, who stand by feeling completely helpless or in Julia’s case, become a carer.
It’s outrageous that doctors are not educated sufficiently to help women suffering from depression. Until adequate medical help is provided I continue to provide free Masterclasses to help women understand how they can overcome depression and other symptoms they experience. In the process, they reclaim their wellbeing and rekindle their personal relationship. My heart goes out to Kate Spade’s family. This devastating situation could have been prevented.