Blog // Taboos and Myths of Menopause
Plein Theater and Zehra Handan Aydin present new editions of the Amsterdam Talks Sex series! Intelligent conversations about Sex and everything you might not know, but hoped for!
In the (online) talk shows, Handan sheds light on different sides of sexuality by interviewing different experts with their views on this topic.
The first edition of 2021 on March 5 is about the taboos and myths of menopause. Guests are Marleen Schlüter (Naturopath and Body-oriented Psychosocial Therapist) and Marianne van Katwijk (Spiritual Sexual Women Empowerment Psychologist).
Read more about the guests and the topic in this blog!
Menopause a curse or a blessing?
By Marianne van Katwijk
I am 44 and already in the second stage of menopause. Is my sex life doomed already?
Often times menopause or menopause is seen as the death of your sensual self and your sexual drive. How often do we hear that you have literally dried up ?!
That you don't really matter anymore? Because let's face it, if we have to believe all the commercials, magazines, and the like, then as a woman you are only good enough if you are young, voluptuous, sexy, horny, and benevolent with big breasts, round buttocks, slim waist and long legs.
And a woman in menopause no longer lives up to that image ...
But is that image correct? Isn't it time we let go of all those pre-programmed beliefs and establish new beliefs that benefit women ?!
My experience of the menopause is partly as we know with a variety of symptoms that are especially uncomfortable. But isn't a woman's life full of inconveniences after all? And is that not also the case because we have been taught to see and experience it as uncomfortable?
What if we had been taught from an early age and for generations that the female body (whatever she looks like) is sacred, and that all inconveniences are a Divine Initiation? How would we view the menopause then?
I know that in Taoism they see the menopause of women as an initiation and beginning of the second spring; They call it Second Spring.
In this Second Spring, a lot of life energy is released that now no longer needs to be used for the possible fertilization process of the egg, and the breakdown of the egg if it is not fertilized, which is therefore accompanied by the monthly menstrual bleeding.
Have you ever thought about how unbelievably much energy it all takes? All that blood we lose for days on end, and we're not even dying! All that blood must also be regenerated. And now that this is no longer necessary, there is a huge surplus of energy that can be used for other things.
I understand that the Taoists see the Second Spring as a phase in which you become more powerful than ever before and if you manage to guide the new released life energy you can experience an incredibly beautiful AND juicy second part of your life as a woman!
What I have personally experienced is that I experienced many changes during perimenopause (the 4 years before menopause). My body no longer willing to fulfill the other's needs, but wanted me to finally start listening to my own needs.
And not only sexually, but also in terms of career. No longer wanting to do what others expect of me, but pursuing my own things, my pleasure and pleasure and zest for life.
And at the same time a deep fear and all the old patterns and beliefs that have emerged with it. Especially the inner critic who constantly says, "I am not good enough, what you are doing is not good enough".
But not listening to my inner voice causes my night sweats, hot flashes, headaches, joint pains, melancholy, sadness, emotional pain, amnesia, itchy skin, muscle tension, mood swings, fatigue, inner turmoil, (morning) nausea, insomnia, weight gain, and uncertainty will only get worse.
Yes, the above list are a few of the symptoms that women can experience in the approximately 7 years that the entire transition phase lasts!
But I literally feel in all cells of my body that this is a tremendous transition, a sacred initiation, a transition… to my most powerful self.
A self that wants to be the first to love myself and make myself happy, a self that is done with other pleasures, keeping myself small, giving myself away and giving away. Constantly putting others first is no longer part of this new powerful self.
My body wants me to REALLY listen to HER, my body wants to be seen by ME, wants me to nourish, cherish, give her softness, and rest. Even my Yoni makes herself heard! She doesn't want penetration right now, a dryness has started, and it feels raw and painful. I listen, I massage her with delicious Yoni oil, I whisper sweet words to her. And tell her she's safe that she doesn't have to do anything she doesn't want to or can't do right now.
I let my whole body come into the soft rest, all parts of me are experiencing this softness. I breathe a lot and deeply, and suddenly drink liters of extra water!
Now half a year after my last period, which is officially called menopause (the last day of your period is the menopause moment). Only now does my body slowly start to acclimatize a little bit to the many changes.
The first thing I notice is: My Yoni is juicy again!
And because I have listened to her so lovingly, she is not only a happy Yoni, but I have never felt her so soft and juicy as now! After years of copious discharge, monthly yeast infections, not enough lubrication during sex, she finally feels for the first time REALLY happy and really nice, soft, and filled with love.
They say it can take up to 3 years after the menopause date (your last day of menstruation) for your body to fully regain its hormonal balance. Until your body has found this balance, you can still have to deal with all the symptoms of the menopause.
But I now know that these symptoms are not a curse, but a turn signal. They show you the way back to your powerful self. The you who wants to and can experience self-love, and who comes into your strength from inner peace, softness and pleasure!
If we, as women, could accept this as the truth, we would all look forward to the moment when you may experience this sacred initiation.
I am ready to enjoy my Second Spring!
Let me introduce myself
By Marleen Schlüter
My name is Marleen Schlüter, 49 years old and I work as a Naturopath and Body-oriented Psychosocial Therapist. In practice, among other things, I guide women to go through the menopause more joyfully and to be able to experience unity with themselves and others in and after this phase of life.
In search of an intense inner connection with myself and the world around me, I have been learning and developing all my life around the theme of evolution of humanity. A path that is a common thread in both my private and working life.
My motto is:
"Living in freedom, full of confidence from a loving power in deep connection with myself and others"
I have been working in youth care since I was 17. First as a social worker and later as a Master Pedagogue, Supervisor and Systemic Worker from family constellations. My life and work experience taught me that more is possible than I had been able to offer up until then from regular healthcare. That made me retrain in naturopath & body-oriented psychotherapy and then started my own practice, aimed at "activating the self-healing ability".
From the deepening into humanity and its evolution I have become increasingly aware that when we can recognize and close our phase of life with attention and love, we can enter a new phase healthier and with less stress.
In my practice many women come with menopausal complaints, who find this phase difficult and are looking for balance. They feel tired, heavy and are looking for the right help for their complaints on a physical, emotional, mental and spiritual level in order to find peace. For me, the transition feels like a special phase in which you can take a new path and use your qualities differently. Your attention shifts from caring for… to more caring for yourself and others. It is about letting go of the old and focusing on a new phase in life, in which you as a woman can let your personal wisdom blossom and only have to "be".
More blogs from Amsterdam Talks Sex can be found on the website: www.amsterdamtalkssex.com/
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