Robin McGraw says she is familiar with feelings of fatigue and lifelessness. "It didn't come because of menopause," she says. "It actually started long before I was in the menopause phase of my life."
When Robin was 44, she started getting hot flashes and feeling unlike herself. "I'd had a hot flash, and I thought, 'What's going on? I'm too young for this,'" she says. So she started interviewing doctors and vowed to find a way to get her hormones back in balance.
Robin writes about her experiences with hormone replacement therapy in her book What's Age Got to Do with It? Like many mothers, Robin says she was making her family a priority but not taking care of herself. "[As women, we] put ourselves at the bottom of the list," she says. "It was through my mother's untimely death and raising my boys that I started to think, 'Wait a minute, I love my children, so I need to take care of their mother.'"
Robin says it wasn't just physical symptoms like hot flashes that alerted her to a problem. She noticed differences in her overall attitude. "I thought, 'Why can't I pull myself out of this? Because I'm a happy person. I'm always smiling, and I'm losing that. I'm losing that excitement for everything I'm taking on in my life right now.'"
When Robin went to the doctor, she was told she was in menopause and got a prescription for hormones. Though Robin insisted she wanted to do research before taking anything, she says the doctor laughed at her. "She said, 'Oh you'll be back. Trust me,'" Robin says. "I think the one moment that sealed my fate … was when she said, 'And also fill this because you're going to need it.' And it was antidepressants."
Instead of blindly following her doctor's advice, Robin decided to take control of her body. "Healthcare management is not one size fits all," she says. "It's one size for you and you and you."
After doing extensive research, Robin decided that, for her, the best route was bioidentical hormone replacement therapy.